Local residents are back for Covid-19 booster and flu vaccinations and having general health check-ups.
Ninety-four year old, Devraj Jhalam, was one of the first patients vaccinated at the GP-led local vaccination service in Slough, back in December 2020. Now, he is back again, this time to boost his immunity against both Covid-19 and the flu, getting both vaccinations on the same day.
Mr Jhalam, a retired engineer consultant, was one of several hundred patients contacted by local GP services to make an appointment to receive booster jabs at the local vaccination service in the centre of the town. Speaking shortly after receiving his vaccine, Mr Jhalam, said: “I have just had both my vaccinations; one in each arm. I did feel it at the time, but now, just moments later, I am feeling perfectly well! I want to reassure anyone thinking about getting both vaccinations together, that it is just fine.”
Mr Jhalam’s daughter is Dr Lalitha Iyer, Medical Director, Frimley CCG and has commented that: “Being in his 90s, my Dad was fortunate enough to be one of the first people in our area to receive his covid-19 vaccination, and I am really pleased that we are back again, this time to get his Covid-19 booster and flu jab together. Knowing that Dad has had his vaccinations is so reassuring for our family, as it means we don’t have to worry so much and we are able to maintain the normality we have achieved. Dad is so precious to us all and just knowing that the flu and covid-19 vaccines can help boost his immunity, is really important.
Sarah Bellars, Executive Director Quality and Nursing, Director of Infection Prevention and Control and Senior Responsible Officer for the Flu and Covid-19 vaccination programmes at Frimley CCG has commented that “Kicking off the Covid-19 booster and flu vaccination activity is a massive accomplishment for everyone involved. I would like to encourage everyone over the age of 50, who had their second covid-19 vaccine dose 6 months ago, to come forward and take up the offer of a booster jab, as well as getting their routine flu vaccination. If it hasn’t been six months since your second dose, don’t delay your flu jab, as you can get that separately. Your GP surgery will inform you of your local clinic dates, or you can visit your local pharmacy.”
“We know that more people are likely to get flu this winter as fewer people will have built up natural immunity to it during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also know that if you get flu and COVID-19 at the same time, research shows you're more likely to be seriously ill. I would like to encourage everyone eligible, to take up the offer of vaccination to help them to stay well.
Dr Nithya Nanda, a Clinical Director for one of Slough’s Primary Care Networks and a local GP, said: We are delighted to be co-administering both Flu and Covid booster vaccinations at our site in the Salt Hill Vaccination Centre. We have seen great enthusiasm and eagerness from eligible patients to get both jabs at the same time.
“While patients are with us, we are following the principle of 'making every contact count' and offering a one-stop health check which comprises of blood pressure and diabetes checks along with heart rhythm checks for early detection of Atrial Fibrillation to prevent life threatening strokes. Our patients are responding well to this and it is reassuring for both us and them that we are able to check-in and see how they are doing.”
He praised all those involved in today’s operation, from practice staff to local volunteers who acted as marshals, to the local council, and staff at the venue itself.
“This has been a real joint effort,” he said.
To book your covid-19 booster vaccination you can respond to a text message from either your GP surgery or the National Booking System using the instructions given. Your practice will let you know if you are able to book your flu jab for the same date. It may be that they are offered separately. You can also book online or call 119. Please note: you cannot book Covid-19 vaccination appointments by calling your GP surgery.
To see what walk in options you have to get your covid-19 vaccine, please visit https://www.frimleyhealthandcare.org.uk/living-here/covid-19-vaccination/walk-in-vaccination-clinics/
To find a pharmacy that offers the flu jab visit https://www.nhs.uk/service-search/pharmacy/pharmacy-nhs-flu-vaccine-service
To book your booster covid-19 jab online visit Book or manage a booster dose of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine - NHS (www.nhs.uk)