Posted by: Mark - Posted on:

Important update regarding flu vaccinations

The flu vaccination programme will be different this year. The number of people eligible for the vaccine is much larger. We will have approximately double the number of vaccines to deliver than we normally would. For this reason, and to ensure that we adhere to social distancing guidelines, there will be changes to the way we offer the vaccine.

Almond Group Practice is NOT able to offer drop in clinics. All vaccinations will be administered on an appointment basis so that we can maintain distancing and undertake the appropriate infection control measures. Individual letters will be sent to all patients eligible for a NHS flu vaccination with a date and time for their vaccination appointment. Due to the sheer volume of vaccines we have to deliver, we ask that you make all attempts possible to attend your allocated appointment as we will not have capacity to offer a choice of appointment times. We have over 4,000 vaccines to give while still running our usual service. Due to the need to have a separate area for vaccinations to be administered and also to comply with the requirement to use separate entrances and exits, all vaccineses will be given from our Winchburgh branch. This will allow our doctors and nurses to continue to provide our usual services from Kirkliston on vaccine clinic days and will ensure that the flu clinics run with the appropriate infection control measures in place.

If you are not eligible for an NHS vaccination and would like to have one, this can be arranged at a community pharmacy. We hope to start our vaccination clinics at the end of September. The vaccine will not be available before then.

Specific age group information is as follows:

Pre school 2-5 age group: will be offered a nasal vaccine as in previous years. This year these will be delivered by the same Health Visitor team who deliver the usual childhood vaccination program. There will be no facility for these to be given in the practice

Primary school age children: will be offered nasal vaccine at school. We will have no facility to give these in the practice.

If your child is unable to receive the nasal flu vaccine for religious or medical reasons we ask that you wait until early October to contact the practice to arrange flu injection as we have no vaccine available to give before then.

Over 65 age group and those ‘at risk’ who have a chronic disease: will receive a letter with an appointment date and time in the first phase of the vaccine program – this will be late September/October/November.

Aged 55-65 who were not previously eligible for the vaccine: will receive a letter with an appointment date and time in the second phase of the vaccine program – likely to be in November/December.

Aged 50-54: as per national guidelines, these patients will only be offered the vaccine if national vaccine supplies allow for this in the 3rd phase of the vaccine program. This decision will be made by the Scottish Government. This is likely to be December at the earliest and possibly not until Jan 2021.

All housebound patients: will receive the vaccine from the District Nursing Team – the timing of these vaccines will be controlled by the District Nursing teams and not by the Practice.

Further information about the vaccine program can be found at



When you come for your vaccination appointment we ask that you come on your own if at all possible. Please arrive at your appointment time as there will be no internal waiting facility.  We ask that you bring your appointment letter with you. We ask that you wear a short sleeved top and be prepared to have your arm ready at the point that you enter the health centre. We will be delivering the flu vaccine in the waiting area in Winchburgh with entry through the usual main entrance and exit out through the back door of the building. We will be unable to deal with any other queries during the flu clinic appointment.

We are aware that these arrangements are different from previous years. The location of the vaccination clinics wholly in Winchburgh is essential for the practice to meet the clinical safety guidelines in place resulting from the COVID pandemic. The volume of vaccinations which we have to undertake (around 45% of our practice population) and the need to reduce potential risk for our patients and for our staff has led us to allocate appointments for patients. We ask you to please ensure that you attend at the appointment time you are allocated.