Rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme
Welcome to our first joint editorial. We hope you all have a healthy, happy and safe 2021. We could spend time reflecting on all that was wrong with the Government's management of COVID-19 in 2020; however, we need to learn, reflect and be prepared to implement changes. Primary care now has the hopes of the nation on its shoulders as the COVID-19 vaccination programme begins – the key to hopefully getting life back to normal.
Never before has primary care been so tested. We are so proud of how primary care teams rose to the challenge to deliver the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine at the end of 2020, working with primary care networks to ensure the service had suitably trained health professionals. However, not everyone has had the chance to be part of this yet. But with the new COVID-19 vaccine developed by Oxford University/AstraZeneca being given regulatory approval by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), this will make the process of delivering this vaccine in general practice easier for the elderly and vulnerable patients, leaving the mass vaccination sites for the more mobile patients. Of course, this means general practice nurses will be at the forefront of the vaccine rollout and therefore must ensure they have the correct training and have read and signed Patient Group Directions (PGDs). Although, at time of writing, we are still waiting for the PGD for the Oxford vaccine.
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