You may already be aware through national communications, that due to risks presented by the new BA.2.86 variant, the NHS have been asked to take pre-emptive steps to bring forward the adult COVID-19 and flu vaccination programmes, and NHS England has announced that it is bringing forward the rollout of this year’s programme, to begin on Monday 11th September.

Local vaccination teams will now be contacting providers to arrange visits and have been asked to ensure that all residents in care homes are vaccinated by 22nd October. It’s vitally important that care home staff should now commence the consenting process for residents, if not already done so.  Attached is a link for the NHS Care homes Operational Support Pack which includes information relating to consent on page 6. COVID-19 Care Home Operational Guidance final

Visits are also an opportunity to offer vaccination to new residents and to care home staff who have not yet received a prior dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. In care homes, visiting teams will also be encouraged to offer co-administration of both COVID-19 and flu vaccines to both residents and staff where possible.  Staff are encouraged to book their vaccinations as early as possible via Local Booking Services from Monday 11 September, and the National Booking Service (NBS), from 18 September. Appointments can also be booked online on the NHS App, or by phoning 119.

A range of materials has been produced which you can use to help promote vaccinations for staff including Q&A leaflets, posters, and stickers, and digital versions can be downloaded at the Campaign Resource Centre Winter Vaccinations

Understanding the uptake of both COVID-19 and flu vaccination remains vital to the successful delivery of the campaign, as well as knowledge of attitudes towards vaccination. The Capacity Tracker (CT) remains an essential tool in this regard, and it is especially useful for managers to update CT immediately following a vaccination team visit. If you require any assistance with using CT or would like to report an issue, please contact