Alston Medical Practice has been vaccinating people against Coronovirus since February this year. Initially Alston and Kirkby Stephen were the only two practices in Eden that were allocated vaccine in addition to the vaccine centres. This has been invaluable in making it much more convenient for patients, especially when Hartside has seen several episodes of snow this year.
There has been significant extra workload for the practice staff in arranging the vaccination sessions and ensuring a Covid safe setting for patients. Staff have been able to use the Day Hospital to ensure enough space.
Alston Moor Emergency Response Group has provided much needed support with transport, especially on days when patients could not make the journey in their own cars due to the snow. AMERG has been coordinating patients in need of transport with volunteer drivers.
The team from Alston Surgery has also been vaccinating very frail patients in their homes.
The national vaccination programme calls people to make appointments in groups calculated by age and vulnerability. Alston Medical Practice is currently immunising the over 65's and people with underlying medical conditions and carers. Some people have been able to book appointments via their computer for vaccine centres elsewhere , ranging from Kendal to Newcastle before vaccine is available for them in Alston. Other people are waiting to make their appointments in Alston.
Surgery staff are asking that you only contact the surgery if you have had an invitation to make an appointment, have previously declined an appointment, and would now like one, or if you think you should have been invited already because you are older than 65. It can take a lot of time to answer queries from people who have not had their invitation yet, and this can slow the whole process down.