Flu Vaccination Service
Community pharmacy has been providing flu vaccinations under a nationally commissioned service since September 2015.
Each year from September through to March the NHS runs a seasonal flu vaccination campaign aiming to vaccinate all patients who are at risk of developing more serious complications from the virus. The accessibility of pharmacies, their extended opening hours and the option to walk in without an appointment have proved popular with patients seeking vaccinations.
Further details on the 2021/22 flu vaccination programme announced
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), Public Health England (PHE) and NHSE&I have jointly published a letter to provide further information on the national flu immunisation programme for 2021/22.
The letter highlights the risk of a lower level of population immunity against influenza because of non-pharmaceutical intervention measures taken to protect the population in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As restrictions lift and the population returns to pre-pandemic norms of social mixing and social contact, the letter draws attention to how this could result in the 2021/2022 winter having co-circulation of seasonal influenza virus (and other respiratory viruses) and COVID-19. With modelling suggesting the influenza impact could be up to 50% larger than that typically seen, it reinforces the message that the vaccination programme will be essential to reduce pressure on the health and social care system this winter.
It is important that all contractors that provide the Flu Vaccination Service review the contents of the letter and use the information contained within to inform their planning for the season ahead.
NHSE&I guidance on flu vaccines for 2021/22
On 1st April 2021 NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) published an updated flu reimbursement letter.
The updated letter provides information on the flu vaccines which will be reimbursable under the 2021/22 Flu Vaccination Service), for the three cohorts (65 years and over, 50-64s and at-risk adults aged 18-64). This includes the addition of another vaccine to those which will be reimbursable – QIVr (Supemtek, Sanofi Pasteur).
The letter states:
Community pharmacies should plan their ordering on the basis of meeting at least the numbers of vaccinations they achieved during the 2020/21 season. Community pharmacy are expected to play a strong role in vaccinating the 50 to 64 year old cohorts to ensure the availability of general practice capacity to continue their focus on flu and COVID vaccination of the most vulnerable clinical cohorts.
It is important that all contractors that provide the Flu Vaccination Service review the contents of the letter and use the information contained within to inform their ordering of flu vaccine for the season ahead.
The information below relates to the Flu Vaccination Advanced Service 2020/21; this will be updated as and when information on the 2021/22 service is published.
Click on a link below for more information.
Service specification for the flu vaccination Advanced Service 2020/21
The service specification describes the requirements for provision of the service and it is essential reading for all pharmacists providing the service.
National Patient Group Direction 2020/21
The national Patient Group Direction (PGD) provides the legal mechanism for administration of flu vaccine under the service; it should not be used for any other purpose. Enquiries regarding the use of this PGD should be directed to ENGLAND.firstname.lastname@example.org
Amendments to the Pharmaceutical Services (Advanced and Enhanced Services) (England) Directions 2013
The Secretary of State Directions provide the legal basis for the provision of the service.
PSNC Briefing: Guidance on the 2020/21 Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Advanced Service
This PSNC Briefing provides guidance for community pharmacy contractors and their teams on the 2020/21 NHS Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Advanced Service in England.
For more information on the following please visit PSNC:
- Additional resources for pharmacy teams
- Guidance on use of Personal Protective Equipment
- Training requirements and resources
- Record keeping and data requirements
- Communicating with GP practices
- Vaccinating outside the consultation room & off-site
- Promoting the service to patients
- Funding, claiming payment and post-payment verification
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Information and resources for LPCs
- Flu Vaccination Service statistics
Local training provided by the LPC:
Following the expressions of interest sought in May 2021 and subsequent bookings by 20th June, the following local training was held:
- Sunday 4th July AM & PM at Resource Finder, Albion House, Albion Lane, Willerby, HU10 6TS.
- Wednesday 22nd July Eve at Resource Finder, Albion House, Albion Lane, Willerby, HU10 6TS
- Sunday 25th July AM at Resource Finder, Albion House, Albion Lane, Willerby, HU10 6TS
For those who could not attend this local training, please feel free to contact ECG directly for any possible further training available, or visit PSNC on the link above for alternative training provider suggestions.
Free training is also available to all Humber pharmacies via Virtual Outcomes: Pharmacy Training – Virtual Outcomes
Please click here to read the latest PharmOutcomes support update June 2021.