Healthwatch City of London Newsletter 28 January 2021

Read the latest information on the roll out of the National vaccination programme, where it is available and to whom.
People

Dear Reader,

As the pace of the vaccination roll out speeds up, Healthwatch City of London are working to get all the latest advice and information to you. As and when we get any updates we will post them on our website and include in our weekly updates. Follow our social media for immediate updates when we get them Healthwatch CoL (@HealthwatchCoL) / Twitter and Healthwatch City of London | Facebook

If you are over 80 and have not yet had the vaccine, or not received an invitation to have the vaccine, you should contact your GP as a matter of urgency.

For those that haven’t been contacted, St Bartholomew’s have limited vaccination slots for City of London residents over the age of 70.  This is currently for the first dose only. If you have already had your first dose, your original provider will offer you the second dose. If you have had the first dose at St Bartholomew’s you will be invited back for your second dose in twelve weeks from your vaccination.

To book please call: 020 7332 1926 (open 8am - 6pm Mon to Fri) or 0203 765 8789 (open 10am - 5pm Mon to Fri) Or email: Bartshealth.vaccinationsSBH@nhs.net

A new COVID vaccination centre will be opening at the of the week in the John Scott Centre, Green Lanes , London, N4 2NU, Green Lanes - Google Maps in addition to the Bocking Street Centre 3 Bocking St - Google Maps. We have had several calls from people trying to book vaccinations at Bocking Street, please book via your GP.

Residents are also able to choose to have the vaccine administered at the Excel centre which is part of the National network of vaccination centres. More pharmacies are also offering the vaccine as part of the National Programme, we will bring you the details once we have confirmation.

Be vigilant for scam emails regarding vaccinations, I received an email this week informing me that I had been chosen to have the vaccination based on my ‘medical and family history’. The email linked to a site which looked, convincingly, to be an NHS booking form, however it then asked me for payment details. Below is an article on what to look out for to avoid scams.

Please let us know your experience of the vaccination programme, good or bad, and we will feed it back.

Rachel Cleave 

Engagement and Communications Coordinator, Healthwatch City of London

Vaccinations for unpaid Carers

The government have clarified that unpaid carers are included in the first round of vaccinations.

If you are an unpaid carer, and are not already, then you need to be registered with a GP and also make sure the Practice has you recorded as an unpaid carer.  This means that they you will be eligible for the vaccine in priority group 6.  For those over 65 it isn't that significant as you will be in a higher band due to age, but for the younger cohort it could mean you get the vaccination sooner.

Taxi vouchers for travel to vaccination centres

Age UK City of London can provide you with voucher codes that will help towards or cover the cost of an Uber taxi to your nearest vaccination centre. The vouchers, provided by Uber, can be used if you need to travel a long way for your vaccination, or if you have very restricted mobility. To access this offer please email Alice Westlake at Age UK London awestlake@ageuklondon.org.uk

The vouchers are not unlimited, so, if you can get there under your own steam, please do so.  The vouchers aren’t restricted to a particular locality or postcode, so even if you are not a City resident you may still qualify.

Dispelling the myths of the vaccine for our BAME community

A media campaign has been launched to counter the misinformation being spread on social media about the vaccine. The greater reluctance of people from ethnic minority communities has been ascribed to various factors including poorer engagement with the health service historically, lack of trust, and exploitation of religious concerns through claims the vaccine contains pork or alcohol, is not halal or alters DNA.

You can watch the video on YouTube

Work is underway with leaders across all of London’s communities to address the misinformation and boost confidence in the vaccine. The Senior Imam, Sheikh Mohammed Mahmoud at the East London Mosque has tweeted a message for the community.

COVID 19 vaccine fraud

Criminals are using the COVID 19 vaccine as a way to target the public by tricking them hand over cash or sending financial details.

The NHS will

  • never ask for payment
  • never ask for your bank details
  • never arrive unannounced at you home to administer the vaccine
  • never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport

The top four scams are:

Text messages

People are asked to press a number on their keypad or to send a text message to confirm they wish to have the vaccine, doing so is likely to result in a charge being made to their phone bill and fraudsters collecting personal information to use again.

Phone calls

Victims receive a phone call from a fake caller offfering the vaccine for a fee or asking for payment details.

Wesbites

Fake URLs links to convincing looking NHS booking forms. The forms may include some personal information already, at the end of the form it will ask for bank details.   

In person

Fraudsters turning up stating they are from the NHS to adminster the vaccine there and then, in exchange for cash payment.

Set up your own personalised care plan

All City of London residents can now have a personalised care plan. The plan is linked to all the urgent care services including 111, the out of hours GPs, the London Ambulance Service and all the emergency departments.

If you would like a personalised plan that includes your wishes and preferences, go online and fill in a questionnaire at www.coordinatemycare.co.uk/for-patients/mycmc/

As soon as you complete the questionnaire and you press the submit button, the questionnaire will automatically go to your NHS GP. Your GP will then add your clinical details and approve the plan. Once the plan is approved all the urgent care services can view it. This way, 111, the out of hours GPs, the London Ambulance Service and the emergency departments will have key information about you, so they won’t be strangers to you when they are called. For more information about the care plan you can visit the coordinatemycare.co.uk website.

City Connections - Telephone befriending & digital buddies

Our colleagues at City Connections run a health and wellbeing programme that is funded by the Corporation of London, linking people to health and wellbeing services in the Square Mile. The schedule of events is now available on their website City Connections | Health and wellbeing services in London’s square mile.

They also run two types of befriending services for residents that can help with social isolation, remote IT learning access and online activities.

The Telephone Befriending service provides you with a volunteer who can telephone you once a week for friendly and social conversation, that can help with isolation and loneliness.

The Digital Befriending service matches you to a volunteer, who will be able to assist you with using your digital device, getting online and learning further with technology today via weekly telephone/Zoom calls. All volunteers are trained and vetted.

For more information on these services, give them a call on 0203 957 9844 or Email Kevin Jones on: kevin@cityconnections.org.uk 

Shoreditch Park and City Primary Care Network Consultation-Completing the Survey

Healthwatch City of London and Healthwatch Hackney are carrying out a consultation in partnership with the Shoreditch Park and City Primary Care Network (PCN). The Shoreditch Park and City PCN is the collective name for our local GP practices who have come together to focus on local patient care which includes the Neaman Practice.

By taking part in this survey, you will help us understand what is working well and what is not, where you would like to see improvement in local health care delivery by the PCN and what services you would like to see develop in the future. The PCN welcomes your thoughts and there are more opportunities to be involved, all the details are at the end of the survey.

Please be fully reassured that your views are confidential and will in no way ever affect the care you receive by your GP surgery.

Please use this link to access the survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/ShoreditchandCity

Latest COVID-19 data for the City of London

The joint City and Hackney Public Health Intelligence Team produce regular statistics on Covid-19 levels in the City. The site below breaks down the cases in the City, and in Hackney, and by Ward, this enables residents to see the wider picture of infection rates. The site is updated regularly. https://hackney.gov.uk/coronavirus-data

Stay at home programme of events

The national lockdown makes it increasingly difficult to find activities to keep us entertained. The City of London Corporation has a dedicated webpage which lists activities for young and old to participate in, you can access it here Your Stay at Home Programme - City of London

Get in touch with Healthwatch City of London

Visit our website for more information, news, and events, have your say about your care, and spread the word about Healthwatch City of London.

Web: www.healthwatchcityoflondon.org.uk Email: info@healthwatchcityoflondon.org.uk

Tel: 020 3745 9563 Twitter: @HealthwatchCoL Facebook: @CoLHealthwatch

Portsoken Health and Community Centre, 14-16 Little Somerset Street, London E1 8AH

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Healthwatch City of London Newsletter 28 January 2021

Stay at home to stop coronavirus spreading

Everyone must stay at home to help stop the spread of coronavirus.

You should only leave the house for 1 of 4 reasons:

  • shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible
  • one form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household
  • any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
  • travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home

Important

These 4 reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.