COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs for Carers in Sussex

by | Mar 4, 2021 | Carer News

Updated 4th March 2021.

The NHS COVID-19 Vaccination programme is now open to eligible adult carers.

The Joint Committee on Vaccines and Immunisation (JCVI) has recommended that people who are in receipt of a Carer’s Allowance, or who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill, should now be eligible for vaccination.

In Sussex, carers’ organisations and local authorities are working together with the NHS to ensure that all registered unpaid adult carers, including parent carers, can access the vaccine.

The NHS is working hard to roll out the vaccine safely to all eligible people as quickly as possible. The NHS in Sussex is on track to have offered the vaccine to all those in the first nine priority groups by mid-April, in line with the national target. This includes all those over the age of 50 and unpaid adult carers.

How do I book my appointment?

If you are a carer, aged 18 or over, who is in receipt of Carer’s Allowance, or if you are already registered as a carer by your GP, you can book right away at one of the larger vaccination centres or pharmacy-led services through the national booking service. Book online here or call 119.

If you are registered as a carer with your GP, you can also wait to be contacted for an appointment by your local GP-led vaccination service if that is more convenient. If you are registered with the GP as a carer for a person who is now eligible because of an underlying health condition, you might be offered appointments together.

If you are a carer aged 16-18, please wait to be contacted by your local GP as they will need to arrange for you to receive the Pfizer vaccine. This is the only vaccine currently licensed for your age group.

If you are a carer who is neither in receipt of Carer’s Allowance nor registered as a carer by your GP, but you are registered with one of the local carers’ centres (listed below) or your local authority, you will be identified and invited to book your appointment by the national booking service. This is a large, complex, phased process and may take several weeks to implement, so please do not worry if you do not hear straight away.

In addition, urgent work is underway locally and nationally to develop a consistent approach for any eligible carers not already identified. We will share further details about this as soon as we can.

Register with a carers’ organisation

Do you look after a relative, friend or neighbour who could not manage without your support?  Many people supporting in this way will not previously have registered as an unpaid carer.

If you are not already registered with a carers’ organisation, you may wish to do so.

Registering with a local carers’ organisation means you can get information and support when you need it most. You can also be kept up to date with plans for carers’ vaccinations as more details become available.

At present, carers’ organisations are receiving a large number of enquiries and working as swiftly as possible to register carers, so please be patient if you are waiting for a response

We will share new information about the vaccination process in East Sussex via our social media channels, this website, and with subscribers to our e-newsletter. You can sign up for our e-newsletter here.

Further information

You can read further information about vaccinations for unpaid carers on the Sussex Health and Care Partnership website here.

Information on the Sussex vaccination programme is available here or for specific questions, email: sxccg.vaccineenquiries@nhs.net, or call the vaccine enquiry phone line: 0800 433 4545 (open 9am – 4pm, Monday to Friday). Please note that they cannot book an appointment for you.

If you have specific questions about vaccinations more generally, please visit the national vaccination service via the NHS here.

You can watch helpful videos from the NHS about the Covid-19 vaccination rollout below.

If you are a young carer in East Sussex, aged  5-18 years, who is looking after someone, or you know someone who is a young carer, there is help and support during the pandemic. Please contact Imago East Sussex Young Carers here.

Information related to the COVID-19 pandemic can be found on our regularly updated page here.

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