Agenda item


Members to receive an update on the Covid 19 and Autumn/Winter vaccination programmes.


Caroline Trevithick, and Kay Darby, both of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland CCGs provided a presentation update on the ongoing situation with Covid 19 and the Autumn/Winter Vaccination programme including recent data and vaccination patterns across Leicester, Leicestershire, and Rutland.


Members noted that:

·         The vaccination programmes changed weekly and had now moved into the under 50 year old category, this meant the number of eligible people changed too.

·         There continued to be several ways to access vaccinations and details were updated regularly online.

·         Although there was data around vaccination take up the situation remained fluid and data changed regularly.


Members raised various concerns about the 3rd dose and booster doses and the confusion amongst people around that. It was advised that the 3rd dose and the booster were different. The 3rd dose was for very vulnerable people, and they would still be called to have a booster. It was acknowledged there was confusion around those 2 terms and further clarity was needed especially when booking through GP surgeries to avoid people who were eligible being turned away.  The CCGs were taking steps to ensure that the right messages were sent out in relation to 3rd doses and boosters.


It was noted that there were instances of people having 2 vaccinations and still catching covid and queried how the booster worked to promote immunisation and whether people had a natural immunity if they had covid. It was advised that where people had been vaccinated and then caught covid they were not usually as poorly as they might have been, but it was also important to note that immunity receded over time. It was likely anyone who had covid did have more immunity, but the levels of immunity were not known as there weren’t the resources to investigate that yet.


There was unease at the level of take up among young people, those of school age and children in care and it was queried how the vaccination programme had been developed since the last meeting to increase uptake in these groups and also among those living and working in care homes.


In relation to mandatory care home vaccination the CCGs had worked closely with local authorities to mitigate the risk of there not being enough staff to care for people. There were 3 homes in the city and 3 homes in the County with concerns and plans in place to work with them to ensure proper staffing. It was noted that the mandatory vaccination of clinical staff was most likely to affect unregistered staff nationally and CCGs were looking at steps to encourage and increase uptake of the vaccination amongst those. Campaigns were focused on convenience, confidence and addressing complacency and there was work with staff to support them in their choices.


Responding further on the comments regarding vaccination uptake Members were informed that:

·         The care homes team had now visited 90% of care homes and there was a 64% uptake of vaccinations across the residents; 18 care homes were still to be visited and CCGs were on target to achieve 100% offer in terms of the visits but there would need to be a follow up to catch those missed because they were too poorly etc at the initial visit.

·         Uptake of the 3rd dose and boosters was currently within national uptake range.

·         3rd primary doses were being recorded as boosters, but CCGs/GPs should be able to identify and pull them out of data sets for their 4th vaccination which would be a booster. Letters would be issued to those eligible and there were processes to run searches and follow up booking people in for recall. It was recognised very vulnerable groups need reassurance and that CCGs needed to communicate to assure those receiving 3rd dose that they would get boosters too.

·         In relation to eligibility to a 3rd dose for those who access specialist care out of area, they would be checked to ensure they were being picked up.

·         Regarding concerns of people being turned away, the CCGs were driving PCNs to look again at those eligible for 3rd dose or booster but there was a broad agreement to be more inclusive than exclusive.

·         In relation to vaccination of school children, the CCGs undertook to visit all schools by end November but were seeing lower vaccination uptake rates across LLR with just 20% in the city vaccinated. City uptake leaned more towards the national programme and walk ins and CCGs were working to drive uptake up. There was lower uptake in some categories and they were seeing rising differential for reasons such as it was likely children would not have the vaccination if their parents hadn’t. In terms of take up by children in care no issue had been identified in this category.


Members felt there were issues with communications from the CCGs and referred to conflicting communications with Rutland. Issues were also flagged about the online booking systems.


Members queried the covid infection rate amongst young people suggesting there was no slow down and whether being given half dose vaccinations was sufficient. In response it was informed that clinical opinion was that vaccinating 12-15 year olds was the right thing to do but the roll out of that vaccination programme was still ongoing and the impact was yet to be assessed.


Members also expressed concerns about accessing the right type of vaccination in circumstances where a person was unable through medical reasons to have Pfizer or Moderna. In response it was advised there was an allergy pathway set up to direct people for the Astra Zeneca if they were unable to have Pfizer or Moderna however there was some supply restricted to a small number of sites accessed through GP pathway. Members challenged the accessibility of the GP/allergy pathway to the Astra Zeneca vaccine noting that it had been a real difficulty for people to get that vaccine and people were being misdirected to vaccination centres then on arrival being told it was not available.


There was a general discussion around lines of communication with health colleagues and suggested it would be helpful to provide a line of communication that enables elected members to raise constituents concerns/case work directly with health colleagues.


The Chair thanked health partners for the update.



1.    That the contents of the presentation and verbal update be noted,

2.    That CCG partners investigate the communications issues referred to during discussion and escalate the concerns about the working difficulties with 119/online bookings.

3.    That CCG partners explore whether frequently asked questions/constituent concerns could be communicated to a single point of contact and to provide that contact.

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