I have been asked to publicise the following news article from today's Staines News. A few things have been omitted from the report:
It was due to Elizabeth that her GP's surgery got further supplies of the vaccine. After she rang the PCT to say that her doctor's receptionist had said they had run out of the vaccine, the PCT rang the surgery and told them to order fresh supplies. [PCTs are to be abolished under the new NHS reforms and Doctors put in charge of their own budgets - where will patients turn in a case like this?]
Elizabeth not only works with the general public, she is a voluntary worker with vulnerable adults who are also classed as at risk in this 'flu epidemic. She has therefore been unable to work with them since before Christmas.
Her MP is Secretary of State for Transport, Phillip Hammond. He surely has an office staff who could answer queries even if he is too busy?
Pregnant woman fearful over swine flu jab delay Jan 19 2011 By Russell Butt
A PREGNANT asthmatic has accused NHS Surrey of 'not caring' after having to wait two weeks for a Swine Flu vaccine.
Elizabeth Bailey, who is 24-weeks pregnant with her first child, is in one of the more at-risk groups for contracting the virus, yet has been struggling to get hold of a vaccination since Saturday, January 1, despite her local surgery getting stock.
'Frustrated and exasperated' Miss Bailey, of Wesley Drive, Egham, was told her surgery, the Grove Medical Centre, also in Egham, would get stock on Monday (January 17), however when she rang the surgery, they confirmed they had stock, but said they were unable to administer it for a further seven days.
She explained: "I rang Surrey NHS who said it was up to the doctors to administer the vaccines however they like. The doctors had told me that because the vaccines come in vials of ten they would wait to give them out when they have at least ten people waiting.
"But if they had taken my number when I had rung, they would have a list of people ready. It's just ineptitude and bad scheduling, and we're the ones having to deal with it. It is tragic that anyone should die of this strain of flu whilst stocks of the vaccine have run out, but heaven forbid anyone should die whilst doctors have it in stock and refuse to give it to patients until suitable times for them."
Miss Bailey even contacted Runnymede & Weybridge MP, Philip Hammond, to express her concerns, as she felt other at-risk patients may also be stuck unable to get the vaccination, but she has yet to hear back.
She added: "Elderly people, or other people who are not quite sure who to go to for help might not know what to do. I don't think I know, I have been to NHS Surrey and they don't seem to care. Yet there's a surgery in Ottershaw giving them away to anyone over six months old, and here's me, waiting almost 20 days like a muppet. And because I am pregnant I can't get it over the counter, I seem to be in a complete Catch-22 situation."
Immunisation lead at NHS Surrey, Tricia Spedding, said she empathised with Miss Bailey and that a special clinic was being arranged at Egham.
She added: “I completely understand that people in at risk groups would want to be protected as soon as possible and I am sorry Ms Bailey has had to wait to receive her vaccination.
“Practices are doing their very best to vaccinate priory groups and are replenishing vaccine supplies as soon as possible. Unfortunately we know this may mean a short wait for some people and for this we are very sorry.”
BTW Elizabeth is the great-granddaughter of the original Elizannie - hence the modern version of her name! She has inherited that Elizannie's 'battling genes' - as Elizabeth said 'I want this publicised because we hear in the media and read in the press that those at risk should ask to be vaccinated and that there are plenty of supplies but to my knowledge last week there were none in Essex, Surrey, Herfordshire and W.Glamorgan. People do not know where to go for advice.'