18 January 2021
Islanders aged 75-79 will be able to book their COVID-19 vaccine appointments from Monday, 25 January as part of the next eligible group as outlined by the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) vaccination schedule.
High risk Islanders, who received a letter from their GPs last year, will receive a letter during the week of 25 January to confirm that they can book their COVID-19 vaccination appointments from 1 February. Islanders will need to bring this letter and ID to their appointment.
Since December 2020, updated guidance to the high-risk category includes Islanders over the age of 70, Islanders with Down's Syndrome and Islanders with stage five kidney disease. Islanders over the age of 70 should not expect to receive a letter but can also book from 1 February.
If Islanders aged 75-79 years old live with someone in the 70-74 year age group, both Islanders can receive the vaccine at the same time by booking their appointments through the Coronavirus Helpline (445566).
Those who haven't received any correspondence from their GP or specialist doctor but believe they are in the high-risk category, should contact their GP surgery for advice and an assessment. Pregnant women with significant heart disease, congenital or acquired, should discuss the risks and benefits of having the vaccine with their GP or obstetric team.
Booking and appointments timeline:
Islanders aged 75-79
- Monday 25 Jan- Booking appointments open
- Saturday 30- Vaccine appointments available at Fort Regent
High risk Islanders (including 70-74)
- Week commencing Monday 25 January - Letters sent to high-risk Islanders
- Monday 1 February – Booking appointments open
- Saturday 6 February - Vaccine appointments available at Fort Regent
Vaccine Programme Lead, Becky Sherrington said: "We are making great progress with our vaccination programme, and it's fantastic news that we're now at the stage where we can shortly invite high-risk Islanders to book their vaccination appointment.
"I would like to reassure everyone that Fort Regent is a clinical setting and meets the required hygiene standards. I would also like to encourage all Islanders in this category to book these slots as soon as possible and to attend their appointments to protect them."
"We understand there might be certain level of anxiety for some high-risk Islanders around going out in public, we have worked hard to ensure our centre meets infection control and prevention measures, and our support marshals are there to help and will be making sure everyone complies with current COVID-19 guidelines."
Islanders will need to have the following information on the vaccine recipient to make a booking:
• Name, Address, Contact details
• Social Security number
• Date of Birth
Minister for Health and Social Services Deputy Richard Renouf said: "Islanders who are high risk should have already received communication from their GPs or specialist doctors explaining their risk throughout the pandemic. Those who haven't received any correspondence from their GP or specialist doctor but believe they are in the category should contact their GP surgery for advice and an assessment.
"This is very encouraging news that Islanders at high-risk will be able to receive their first doses of the vaccine. I am aware that some Islanders at high-risk regarding COVID-19 will have been shielding for many months now, so receiving the vaccine will help them get back to a sense of normality that has been long overdue.
"Officers and medics across Government have worked tirelessly to ensure the vaccine programme is delivered as effectively as possible. This is another important step in the Island's response to COVID-19 and we need an Island wide effort to protect the most vulnerable in our community."
As some Islanders in this age group might not have immediate access to the internet, in addition to family and friends helping, support for booking appointments is available through Parishes and by calling the Coronavirus Helpline on 445566.
Factors that mean someone is at high risk (severely vulnerable) are:
- those over the age of 70 (you may not have received a letter from your doctor if you are at high risk for this reason alone)
- solid organ transplant recipients
- people with specific cancers or receiving certain cancer treatments:
- people with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy
- people with lung cancer who are undergoing radical radiotherapy
- people with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
- people having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors
- people having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
- people who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs
- people with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- people with rare diseases that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), homozygous sickle cell)
- people on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection
- women who are pregnant with significant heart disease, congenital or acquired
- adults with Down's Syndrome
- adults with kidney dialysis or stage 5 kidney disease