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Enhanced Service Specification for Phase 3 Covid Vaccinations Published

Publication date: July 2021

NHS England has published the new enhanced service specification for phase 3 of the vaccination programme

A letter to GPs accompanying the new specification states they have ruled out offering the vaccinations at individual practice level:

‘We have considered carefully whether we could support the administration of the Covid-19 booster vaccines at individual practice level. For a number of reasons, this is not operationally feasible. 

This is largely due to the need to expand the capacity in the delivery network (to deliver the Covid booster programme alongside the flu programme) but it will only be possible to on-board a limited number of new sites during the summer; the supply chain cannot support deliveries to all practice sites; and it is possible the vaccine characteristics will require at scale working.

For these reasons practices that wish to participate in the booster programme will need to do so as part of a PCN grouping. We will also give practices the opportunity to change their PCN grouping in phase three if they so wish, taking account of feedback in phase two.’

In a statement the LMC endorses, the BMA has expressed disappointment at this:

‘Doctors and their teams should be given support and flexibility to take part in a way that works best for their patients… Elsewhere in the UK we have seen GPs giving COVID-19 vaccinations from within their surgery buildings, so there is no good reason for it not to happen in England. And while practices should be able to work together in the campaign, this should not be mandated.’

Practices have been given until 28 July to opt in to the programme, which is provisionally due to start on 6 September. 

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