Colin Beattie, Constituency MSP for Midlothian North and Musselburgh, has encouraged local constituents to ensure that they take up their vaccination appointments when they are offered them. He has also urged constituents to be patient, and to not overwhelm GP’s by submitting enquiries about the vaccinations.
Colin Beattie MSP commented:
‘We all know that the best way that we can protect ourselves and others from Covid-19 is by getting vaccinated. We are now well underway with our vaccination programme, having vaccinated over 1 million people in Scotland with a first dose so far. I would like to encourage everyone who is offered the vaccine to ensure that they take it, for the good of the public health in Scotland.
‘I have been receiving lots of correspondence from worried constituents who have not yet been contacted about their vaccine. Please be patient with this. Our health workers are going as fast as they can to roll this vaccine out and ensure it is distributed as widely as possible. Please do not contact your GP to ask when you will receive your vaccination, as this will overwhelm our health services.
‘The nature of the vaccination is that it is a rollout, so because of this it is very normal that many in each category will not have heard about an appointment in the first week or two of their JCVI priority group. Not everyone in the group will get the vaccine on day one by the definition of a rollout. There will be several weeks of calling people forward within each priority group, and so if you haven’t heard anything in the first period of the vaccination target dates then this is nothing to worry about and you will undoubtedly be contacted soon after.
‘Within each priority group, the GP surgery will determine who gets what appointment and they will take into consideration differences in overall health. Some younger than you may get the vaccination more quickly because they may be assigned to a different GP, clinic, or distribution centre, and therefore they are working to a different list.
‘Some clinics will receive supplies before others, as we try to ensure that as many people around the country get access to the supplies and that they are distributed fairly and effectively. This is very typical in a rollout because it would be impossible to offer everyone in a priority group an appointment on the same day.
‘I do, of course, understand that people are anxious and eager to be vaccinated, but the best thing we can do right now is let our health workers, who are the experts in this, work through their lists as quickly as they can and not hinder them by overwhelming them with enquiries.
‘We should all familiarise ourselves with the information on the Scottish Government website which alerts to when each category should expect to receive their vaccination and then patiently wait to be contacted by NHS Lothian with a date and time.
‘If you have concerns the best place to get more information is by contacting the Covid-19 Vaccination Helpline on 0800 030 8013.’