Three Bracknell GP practices roll-out Covid vaccine

A second coronavirus vaccination roll-out for the people of Bracknell has begun today (15/1).

The Health Triangle Primary Care Network – comprising Ringmead Medical Practice, Evergreen Practice and Crownwood Medical Centre – will deliver vaccines to patients aged 80 and over using one of its sites.

Dr Farhad Daruwalla, GP at Ringmead Medical Practice and a Clinical Director for the Health Triangle PCN, said: “We are delighted to get this local service up and running.

“By working together and in line with national guidelines, we will be focusing our efforts on vaccinating our patients aged 80 and over from all three practices, including those residing in local care homes.”

The PCN will use Ringmead Medical Practice’s Birch Hill Medical Centre, RG12 7WW, Bracknell, as its vaccination site, with eligible patients being invited to attend. As with all other vaccination centres and sites, vaccinations will be by appointment only.

The PCN’s rollout supports the ongoing, wider community Covid vaccination programme being delivered locally.

Last month, The Health Triangle joined two of its neighbouring PCNs – Ascot and Bracknell and District PCNs – to vaccinate some of its eligible cohort (aged 80 and over) from a centre set up at Waitrose’s Sports and Leisure Centre at the firm’s head office in Willoughby Road, Bracknell.

In line with the PCN’s move to one of its local sites, all their remaining eligible patients will be vaccinated at Birch Hill Medical Centre.

Meanwhile, Ascot and Bracknell and District PCNs will continue to use the Waitrose site to vaccinate their patients over the coming weeks and months.

Dr Ivan Aloysius, a GP and Immunisation lead at Ringmead Medical Practice and a Clinical Director for The Health Triangle PCN, said: “It’s important that patients do not contact us to seek their vaccine, we will contact you. When we do contact you, please attend your booked appointment.

“The roll-out of the vaccine will be a marathon, not a sprint, and we cannot let down our guard. We all must continue to follow the guidance in place to control the virus and save lives – that means staying at home as much as you can, and following the ‘hands, face, space’ guidance when you can’t.

“Due to the volume of people we’re hoping to immunise over the coming days, we’re asking that everyone arrives on time and not early, for their appointment, and follows social distancing measures. Please don’t forget to wear your masks.”

He added: “It is important to note that the vaccine takes three weeks to give benefit so you can still be at risk during that time. Also, even when vaccinated, you may still be carrying the virus and could spread it.

“Therefore, we must not be complacent and follow the strict guidance in place.”

Whilst all initial contact between patients and GP practices remains online or on the phone at present, if you are a patient at Ringmead Medical Practice and are asked to be seen face-to-face by a clinician for a non Covid related medical matter, then please note that this will take place at the Great Hollands and Crowthorne sites during the days when the centre will be used as a Covid vaccination site. This is to ensure the safety of both staff and patients alike in line with national guidelines.

According to vaccination statistics as of 11 January, more than 2.6 million doses have been given to 2.3 million people in the UK.

For the latest information about the vaccination programme please visit the Frimley Health and Care website.

More information on the COVID 19 vaccine can be found on the NHS website here.

*PCN’s are a key part of the NHS Long Term Plan. A PCN consists of a group of GP practices working together, to improve and build upon core of primary care services, to enable a greater provision of care and to meet the changing needs of the community