Covid Vaccination Programme Facebook Updates

1st May 2021

As you are aware, our East Bergholt has been vaccinating patients who are vulnerable or over the age of 50 years (Cohorts 1-9) for the last few months. We are very pleased to say that we have done close to 6000 1st dose vaccinations and are now in the process of offering the 2nd dose to those same patients. We hope to complete the vaccinations by the end of June.
During the last few months, we have worked under some very challenging conditions and have done our best to offer a very organized and safe vaccination clinic along with our routine services to the best of our ability. We were hoping to vaccinate every single patient for the first dose by March / April and then repeat the process for the 2nd dose.
However, issues such as availability of vaccines and government guidelines did not allow us to offer 1st dose vaccines to those below the age of 50 yrs (Cohorts 10-12) within that time frame.
Unfortunately, there is now an overlap between Cohorts 1-9 having their 2nd dose vaccinations with Cohorts 10-12 having their 1st dose vaccinations.
With changing guidelines about the vaccinations, increase demand on our staff and regular services such as monitoring patient with long term conditions, etc we have had to re-evaluate a few things.
We are extremely sorry to inform you that whilst we will ensure that every patient who received a first dose of the vaccine at the practice will be offered a second, we unfortunately don’t the resources to administer first and second doses of the vaccine to patients under the age of 50 (Cohorts 10-12)
We understand that this may disappoint those of you are in Cohorts 10-12 and were expecting to get a call from us and we truly apologize for the same.
Part of the reason we felt we could take this decision, is because we have been confidently informed that mass vaccination centres as now well established, and appointments can be booked easily on-line or via 119. Please search online for ‘Book a coronavirus vaccination’ and follow the link to the NHS website which will confirm eligibility and enable you to book a vaccination at your nearest mass-vaccination centre.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all our staff, volunteers, PPG for their tremendous support all along the way and also all our patients who have been very kind and understanding during these difficult times. We hope that you will continue to follow government guidelines and stay safe.

7th April 2021

We were delivered a batch of the Pfizer vaccine last week and vaccinated more than 1000 patients for their 2nd dose over the Good Friday bank holiday weekend.
This week, we will be getting 2 deliveries of the Pfizer vaccine. We had planned to conduct the vaccination over 6 days. However, the dates of the deliveries were changed at short notice and so we are now going to do the same number of vaccination over 5 days from Wednesday to Sunday.
We would like thank our fantastic volunteers, PPG and staff for making this possible.
** We are also very pleased to know that we have contacted over person who had their 1st dose Pfizer vaccination with us and offered them an appointment for the 2nd dose.
If anyone feels that they have not been contacted, then can you please email immediately**
By the end of this week we will have used the last of our Pfizer vaccines an we are unlikely to get any more Pfizer vaccines in the future.
We hope that you continue to follow social distancing guidelines and continue to stay safe.

23rd March 2021

Hello all,
2ND DOSE VACCINATION UPDATE FOR COHORTS 1 to 9 (patients above 50 years or those below 50 with medical conditions):-
We are extremely pleased to let you know in the 10 weeks since we undertook the covid vaccination clinics, we have that we have contacted / offered appointment to all eligible patients in Cohorts 1-9 and have done more than 6000 vaccinations so far.
Today will be the last day when we offer 1st dose vaccinations to patients in Cohort 1-9. For anyone who think they have missed out please email us on or call '119' and the national booking system will be able to offer you an appointment at one of the local mass vaccination centres.
We are also pleased to let you know that we have started booking patients for the 2nd dose of their covid vaccinations from next Thursday which will be 11 weeks from when they received their first dose.
As of now, we have been told that the government will send to us all vaccines (both Pfizer as well as Oxford) for the 2nd dose in the same order and quantity that we had received the first dose.
Hence we expect to vaccinate all patients for their 2nd dose in the 11th week from when they had their first dose. Patients in the initial cohorts (1-4) will be contacted by telephone for their appointment where as texts will be used for other patients just like we have done previously.
We are also mindful of the fact that the vaccination clinic overlaps the Easter holiday period and have been making extensive plans to deliver both the vaccination clinic as well as other regular services at the practice. We are expecting for it to be a very busy period for the next 2-3 weeks and thank for your patience as well understanding during these exceptional times. We will continue to keep you updated on a regular basis.
Due to national vaccine shortage, the national policy is that patients in Cohort 10-12 (those below 50 without medical conditions) should not be offered appointments for 1st dose vaccinations until May 2021. We hope to update more on this towards the end of the week.

18th March 2021

Hi all,
We have been getting email from patient who have asthma asking us about their vaccination. We hope that the post below will clarify some doubts as they are the government guidelines which are generally being used to decide on eligibility of vaccination.
** If you were sent a shielding letter, you will be in priority group 4.
** If you have ever had an emergency hospital admission for your asthma, or ever been prescribed three courses of steroid tablets in a three-month period, you will fall into priority group 6. 
** If you do not fall into either of these groups and are under the age of 50, you will be vaccinated after the first nine priority groups (as of update from govt today, in view of low stocks of the vaccine likely to be sometime in may 2021)

9th March 2021

* Information regarding supply chain for '1st dose' of the vaccine:-
- The type and number of vaccines (either Pfizer or Oxford) as well as date of delivery sent to the vaccinations hubs is decided by a national team. The hubs gets notified about 7-10 days before the date of the next delivery.
- Although the hubs can't request specific type of vaccine or the date of delivery, each hub submits the number of vials used and vaccinations done to the national team.
- The general aim is the make sure that patients / cohorts indifferent parts of the country get vaccinated proportionally and that no one is disadvantaged. (Various factors such as patient demographics, new vaccination hubs getting approved, vaccine availability from manufacturers, etc affect the way deliveries are assinged)
- As the gap between 1st and 2nd dose of vaccine is recommended to be between 10-12 weeks, the general effort is to vaccinate majority of the cohort groups before starting the 2nd dose vaccines as that is the best way to save more lives.
Information regarding '2nd dose' of the vaccines:-
- A national policy for this is likely to be out soon. Early suggestions indicate that patients may be vaccinated during the 11th week from their first dose. We understand ongoing efforts are being made to ensure that 2nd dose of the vaccines can de delivered in the same order as the 1st. However, the above is not set in stone and can change.
- As the guidelines / circumstances were different when the vaccinations initially started, the surgery had given some patients potential date for the 2nd vaccine at 12 weeks. We apologise that in light of various developments since, those dates will no longer be valid. We are keeping a close on advice about 2nd dose of the vaccination program and will update everyone as soon as we know more.

8th March 2021

Hello All,
Hope this message finds you well. Apologies about the slightly long gap in updating you recently.
Over the last month the surgery had not received any supply of the Pfizer vaccine. Rather the Oxford vaccine was delivered in limited quantity almost once a week.
Vaccination clinics have been held on weekdays whenever we have received a batch of the vaccines and we averaged about 100-150 vaccines a day. Due to a lack of supply of vaccines no clinics were held last week but we hope to restart then from today.
All eligible patients are being contacted by either telephone or text to offer socially distanced appointment slots.
We are aware about change in guidelines / priority status related to asthma, learning disability patients and we have made adequate arrangements to our lists accordingly. We are at present calling patients in the priority list 6&7.
We are aware that the government is also sending letters or calling patients to offer appointments at other venues such as mass vaccination centres. As this information is not always know to us, there is a chance that patients may receive multiple invites for their vaccinations and we apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.
We thank you for your continued patience and support and hope that you will adhere to social distancing rules till further notice as advised by the government.

11th February 2021

Hello all. Hope staying warm in this snowy / cold weather.
- We are pleased to say that we have conducted a mop up clinic yesterday to vaccinate those patients who had missed out on their vaccination over the last few weeks. If anyone in priority group 1-4 feel that they have not been contacted or missed their appointment then please email us at with your details. (Please note : any other queries to this email about the vaccination program is unlikely to be responded to). You can also call 119 of if you are over 70 and book an appointment via the central appointment system.
- As mentioned before, we don’t stock vaccines and have no control on the date of future deliveries. If we get vaccines or plan to conduct any vaccination clinics, we will either call or text you to book an appointment. The text msg should have a link to our website for FAQ regarding the booking process. If you miss booking the appointment, please don’t worry - we will contact you again. PLEASE DO NOT call the surgery with queries about covid vaccination appointments as it blocks our phone lines and prevents staff from carrying out their normal duties.
- At present, we do not plan to create any back up lists of patients who can attend the clinics at short notice.
Rest assured, we are keeping ourselves prepared and await further government advice about future vaccination clinics.

27th January 2021

It’s been about 2 weeks since we first started vaccinating patients.
Statistics so far:
- Over 3500 vaccinations done
- Taking out patients who are house bound, admitted to the hospital, have recently had Covid or unsuitable for other reasons we are happy to say that we have achieved 90-95% coverage in patients within the first 4 priority groups.
- We have also been doing house bound patient and have achieved about 80% coverage there too.
This would not have been possible without our PPG, volunteers as well as staff and we would like to say a big thank you to them for all their support and kindness
Please also note:
- The surgery gets set limited supply of the type and number of vaccines as decided by the local health authority which also have to be used up within a given time frame. We do not hold any significant stock at the premises.
- We have to follow government and local health body guidelines about inviting different priority groups for the vaccination. Hence we cannot predict any time scales for when people will get vaccinated.
- We are running this program along side our regular clinic and trying to balance both to the best of our ability. However, it is inevitable some services will be affected and we apologise for the same.
- We have given a lot of patients who have been vaccinated a date for their 2nd dose in 12 weeks time. However, it is possible that we may get our delivery for the 2nd dose on different day than expected and may therefore have to change the date. We will let you know closer to the time.

23rd January 2021

Interesting facts:-
- The Pfizer vaccine gets delivered in a pizza box sized container and has 195 vials which expire within 3.5 days of delivery.
- Each vial has to be prepared before use : leave outside for 20 mins before adding exactly 1.8ml of saline and mixing gently.
- The vial is now ready to vaccinate upto 6 people (It has to be discarded if not used within 2 hours of being made up).
- We have a 'Vaccine hot zone' where the vials are prepared one at a time throughout the day and sent to the vaccinators for them to administer to the patients.


20th January 2021

We will be vaccinating patients 6 days this week as we have been told that we will be sent have 2 deliveries of the ‘Pfizer’ vaccine scheduled.
In order to reduce wastage and offer more appointments, some patients may be sent text messages to self book an appointment online. Please try to book the appointment as soon as you get the message as they are quite limited.
In case you miss booking the appointment, don’t have a smart phone or internet access or don’t get a text message then please do not worry. We will contact you to offer another appointment.
And If you have already got an appointment or have had the vaccine then please ignore the message. 
For more information please check our website below
We will be much obliged if you kindly DO NOT call the surgery about any query regarding the corona virus vaccination program as it ties staff up from doing other important surgery related matters.

18th January 2021

We are extremely pleased to let you know that we successfully carried out well over 1100 vaccinations last week and used up almost every drop of the entire supply of the 'Pfizer' vaccines before its expiry period of 3.5 days! So proud of our nursing and admin staff who did such a fantastic job on those days
Interestingly, we have been told that we will be delivered 2 batches of the 'Pfizer' vaccine this week and so we will be holding vaccination clinics for the next 6 days! This is great news as we will now be able to get many more of you vaccinated quickly. Please see the video below for more information about how you can help us vaccinate quickly and safely.
Please note : All appointments will be pre-booked as per the government advised priority list for vaccinations. We are not offering any walk-in clinics or Oxford vaccines at this stage in the surgery. (house bound patients will be given the Oxford vaccine from the limited supply we have been allocated for that purpose). 
We have tried to plan ahead and minimise disruption to routine clinics. However, such large scale operations are unpredictable and we apologise for any inconvenience that you may at all encounter.

16th January 2021

Thank you volunteers!

As many of you might be aware, we have been vaccinating patients against covid using the Pfizer vaccine before they expire within 3.5 days of delivery.
However, this post is not about us.
It is about our fantastic volunteers who despite the harsh weather conditions and challenging circumstances have worked incredibly hard everyday to support us. Without them his programme would not have been possible and we would like to thank them from the bottom of our hearts for all their selfless work and dedication.
You are truly amazing. Thank you

15th January 2021

We have been vaccinating patients using the ‘Pfizer’ vaccine at our vaccination hub in East Bergholt for 2 days now. However as the vaccine requires special transportation and storage requirements it can’t be used for housebound or care home patients safely.
We are please to let you know that we have obtained the Oxford (Astra Zeneca) vaccine for our housebound patients and one of our clinicians will likely be visiting patients from next week to vaccinate them in their homes.

14th January 2021

Here we go...


13th January 2021

COVID VACCINATION UPDATE (see previous posts for more information)
We are currently booking patients as per government advised priority list for our vaccination clinic this week which will run from Thursday to Saturday.
Please note : This is not a walk in clinic and only those patients offered prior appointments will be vaccinated.
The current priority list includes patients who are 80+ as well as those who form part of the health and social care sector.
All those who are working in the health and social care sector will soon be able to attend the mass vaccination centre in Ipswich.
However, if anyone in the these sectors who live or work in our catchment area would like to be vaccinated locally, they can email us on with evidence of their work. Depending on availability we may offer them an appointment this week or during the next round.
At present we get a limited supply of vaccines each week and we will be working down a list of eligible patient on a week by week basis.
As yet we do not know the date of delivery of the vaccines for the second week and so cannot book anyone ahead of time.
We hope that all of you will continue to take appropriate precautions and stay safe

11th January 2021

As mentioned in our previous post, we have been approved as a covid vaccination hub and will be catering to patients from our surgery along with those from Hadleigh and Bildeston centre. The vaccination hubs are at East Bergholt and Hadleigh sites only and appointments are being shared out fairly across all practices based on the eligible list size.
** We expect to start vaccinating our patients this week and will be running our clinics from Thursday, Friday and Saturday (14th - 16th January).
** All appointments are pre-booked only as per government advised priority list (please our previous post about this information).
It is possible that - on vaccination days - patient may find:
- a 20mph temporary speed limit (if the local health authority approves)
- parking being offered at the school opposite the surgery for patients who are able to do so.
- part of the East Bergholt building blocked off for covid vaccination clinics. The regular phlebotomy / doctor / nurse appointments may have been relocated.
- there may be changes to the way patients self check-in for any routine pre-booked appointment at the clinic or the way they enter and exit the building.
We will aim to update this information closer to the day of the vaccination clinic.
We will be very grateful if you could help us spread the word and bear with us for any inconvenience caused.

8th January 2021

We are extremely pleased to inform our patients that our East Bergholt site has been approved as a covid vaccination hub for our local population.

We are waiting to hear from the health authority about the date of delivery of vaccines but it is likely to be sometime in next 1-2 weeks.

The program will run collaboratively with two other local practices based at Hadleigh and Bildeston. East Bergholt and Hadleigh will be the hubs hosting the vaccination clinics.
To begin with we expect to be asked to deliver the Pfizer vaccine. Due to special requirement for storage and transport, it is delivered in batches of 975 vaccines at a time and they have to be used within 3 days.
The practice is usually given only 7-10 days notice about the date of delivery of the vaccine and therefore we will only make telephone calls and invite eligible patients to attend the East Bergholt site. This may change as we move through the cohorts.
(Please note : The initial government guideline to give the 2nd dose at 3 weeks has changed and now needs to be offered at 12 weeks)
Please can we request that you DO NOT call us with regards to the booking appointments for the vaccination clinic and follow our website / facebook page for regular updates. The reception staff will not be able to answer any queries. You can of course continue to call us for any other medical health related query that you may have.
Patients will have to be invited following the strict criteria we have been compulsorily asked to follow by the government. The first cohort will be patients aged 80 and over. We sincerely apologise but we cannot vaccinate you earlier outside your cohort. However, we will try our best to roll out the vaccine to all of you as quickly and safely as we can.
We need your help to communicate this information to relatives, friends and neighbours in this cohort who do not have access to social media or the internet, by letting them know that we will be calling them soon.
Thanks you for you kind patient and support. We will aim to keep you updated regularly. Please do continue to follow social distancing measures and stay safe. 

4th January 2021

Information about Covid-19 Vaccination priority groups.
Only selected surgeries after due diligence have been given the permission to vaccinate patients as the vaccines has stringent requirements for storage and delivery.
Constable country surgery is working hard to get its East Bergholt approved so that we can vaccinate our local population and do our bit in controlling the pandemic. We will let you know as soon as we know the outcome of that exercise.
Patient who are 80+ and can attend the surgery will be give first priority as per government guidelines.
Vaccines are delivered to the surgery at a short notice and so we can have as little as 3-4 days to notify patients (likely contact method : telephone).
As we need to do almost 1000 vaccinations over 3 days we are unlikely to be able to lot of choice about appointment date and times.


3rd January 2021

Urgent request for volunteers

As you are aware, we are awaiting for the local health body to assess us as a ‘vaccination hub’ for the Covid vaccination program at our East Bergholt site.

As part of the preparation, we are trying to assess the possibility of volunteers helping us on vaccination days. The role would involve helping patients with parking their cars into vacant slots and showing them directions into and out the surgery.
At present we are assessing for potential volunteer numbers daily from Wednesday 13th January 2021 to Sunday 17th January 2021 from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm.
If would like to help in any way, please email our friendly PPG at with your name and phone number. They will keep your email address and phone number confidential.
A member of the PPG will contact you and answer question about your role on the day. They will then pass the list to the surgery and we will contact you to organize a proper debrief session to discuss your role and answer any questions you may have.
We would like to take this opportunity for all the help and kindness you have shown to us.
Please note : The surgery website now has a 'Covid and Flu vaccination' section where regular updates and information will be posted. We do not have any further information about site approval or the vaccination start dates at this stage. We understand that many of you would like to know more and we will aim to put regularly timely information on our website or facebook page.

29th December 2020

Update about East Bergholt Covid Vaccination Hub 
We hope that all of you have had a good Christmas.
Further to our post on 23rd December, we would like to provide a further update about the corona virus vaccination.
As you might be aware, the only vaccine that is approved and available in the UK as of yet is the Pfizer vaccine. Due to the specifics involving storage, transportation and availability, the vaccine is not being supplied to individual practices. Instead 'vaccination hubs' are being created to cater to the needs to a number of local practices.
** Constable country surgery along with Hadleigh surgery have applied to be approved as a local 'vaccination hub' and is awaiting local health body clearance. We do not have the specifics about the potential start date as yet but it could be sometime next month. We will update you as soon as we know.
The vaccination has to done according to age range of the patients and the first batch has to be compulsorily administered specifically to those over 80 years only. ‚ÄčThis is a government directive.
** At this point, we need your help to communicate this information to relatives, friends and neighbours in the over 80 years cohort who do not have access to social media, by letting them know that we will be calling them in early January about the next steps in the process. If a local hub is approved, they might have to prepared to attend 2 appointments 3 weeks apart at a relatively short notice.
** We understand that you may have further question about this and will try to keep you posted via social media regularly. At this point, the reception or other staff at the surgery do not have any more information than the above and we will be much obliged if you DO NOT contact the surgery at this stage.

23rd December 2020

We are aware that many of you are keen to find out more about the Covid vaccination program.
As you may be aware, the vaccine is effective but needs careful handling to make sure it does not loose its potency when being transported. The vaccine is normally stored at minus 70 degrees and has a shelf life of 3-4 days once it is removed from that setting. And for it to be effective, each person requires 2 doses 3 weeks apart.
As the supply of the vaccine in Suffolk is limited, 1000 doses are sent to each vaccination hub in bulk one week at a time. Also, each vaccination hub has been told that they will be informed of their date of delivery only 10 days in advance.
As a practice, we are aware that we have a large population who necessarily can't travel far and would like to have their vaccinations done locally. We are working hard to find a way to do this. If for some reason this does not work out then patients may have to travel to vaccinating hubs in Ipswich for the same.
The vaccination has to done according to age range of the patients and the first batch has to be compulsorily administered specifically to those over 80 years only. ‚ÄčThis is a government directive.
** At this point, we need your help to communicate this information to relatives, friends and neighbours in the over 80 years cohort who do not have access to social media, by letting them know that we will be calling them in early January about the next steps in the process. If a local hub is approved, they might have to prepared to attend 2 appointments 3 weeks apart at a relatively short notice.
** We understand that you may have further question about this and will try to keep you posted via social media regularly. At this point, the reception or other staff at the surgery do not have any more information than the above and we will be much obliged if you DO NOT contact the surgery at this stage.
We know this year past year has been challenging for all of us and we thank you for your support and understanding so far. We request that you please be patient with us for a little while longer while we work hard to the role out of the covid vaccination. The program requires a lot of planning in order for us all to deliver safely and efficiently while we continue to deliver our other services with as minimal disruption as possible.
We hope that you continue to look after yourself and we will be in touch with you soon about the program again.


2nd December 2020

Please read the post below with regards to new development surrounding the corona virus vaccination. We are keen to help you and will do our best but unfortunately at this stage we don’t have the vaccines or government approved authority to give them to you. We will aim to keep you posted about any new changes as they arise. Thank you for your kind patience and support.[0]=AZVCGhBZHj9RfRUj7SYF-CCN2aFA5dYdsX4opuPi9hVr9GHySzGToRAmthhEdKue802bS-M6fPES3nVKNXWOnUUWekZtjTGc04TS_w5NQJPqnS02JppL0yoQpuPN8Cu-ym6EpzdF4nIjmClnzkayOnQatpClTQuAh5AkJBGhQsXW-pOKMRBG2-6gXu_LZyZc0jM&__tn__=kK-y-R

Coronavirus Update

As we head into autumn is vital that we continue with the measures which have been in place for the last few months to protect both staff and patients from Covid-19.

Our primary objective at the practice is to minimise the need for patients to come to the practice at all, but if they need to then to minimise the risk. Here is a summary of the measures we have put in place:

If possible, submit any medical or admin query via our online eConsult service. We aim to respond to all eConsults within 2 working days.
If you cannot use eConsult or if your need is urgent, our receptionists will place you on a triage list and one of our doctors or nurse practitioners will call you back.
If you need to come to the practice, the clinician will ask you to wait in your car with your mobile. The clinician will call you when they are ready to see you.
You must tell us if you are experiencing any Covid-19 symptoms such as fever, a new cough, or loss of taste and smell.
Please wear a mask or wrap a scarf around you face when you come to the practice, and sanitise your hands.
Please be assured that you can contact us if you feel you need to speak to a clinician about any health concerns you may have. If you have concerns regarding the health of vulnerable patients, please inform us.