The provisional Immunisation Against Infectious Disease – The Green Book: Chapter COVID-19 Sars-Cov-2 has been released. Click on the link above to review.
It is essential that all healthcare professionals involved in the vaccination programme read the guidelines and remain updated as the guidelines evolve. Below are some of the key points from the document.
The guidelines currently provide information on two vaccine candidates that are expected to be used:
How many doses?
Both vaccines are expected to require a two dose course.
Pfizer vaccine – 0.3ml dose with a minimum 21 day interval.
AstraZeneca – 0.5ml dose with a minimum 28 day interval.
Pfizer – should be stored at -70°C +/- 10°C and has shelf life of 6 months. Once thawed the vaccine may be stored for 5 days at 2-8°C
AstraZeneca – should be stored at +2ºC to +8ºC and has a shelf life of 6 months. The vaccine does not contain any preservative. After first opening the vial, it should be used within 6 hours when stored at room temperature (up to 30º C [86°F]) or within 48 hours when stored in a refrigerator (2 to 8º C [36 to 46°F]). After this time, the vial must be discarded. The total cumulative storage time must not exceed 48 hours.
The expected priority groups will be tiered as follows, 1 being the highest priority to vaccinate with 9 being the lowest priority.
There are very few individuals who cannot receive the Pfizer-BioNTech or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines. Where there is doubt, rather than withholding vaccination, appropriate advice should be sought from the relevant specialist, or from the local immunisation or health protection team.
The vaccine should not be given to those who have had:
● a confirmed anaphylactic reaction to a previous dose of aCOVID-19 vaccine,
● a confirmed anaphylactic reaction to any components of the vaccine
Need training for yourself or your team?
It is important that professionals stay up to date with the COVID-19 Green book chapter. Health Academy also have a range of different training options depending on level of experience of health professional including:
Foundation in Immunisation (For new immunisers) – In line with National Minimum Standards. This can be delivered as theory only or including clinical skills of administration assessed via video submission.
Not sure what you or your team need:
Great news, you’re nearly ready, you just need to complete training on the COVID-19 vaccine.
As someone with experience, you are highly likely to be called upon to help support the delivery of the COVID-19 vaccine. You will need to do your Annual Immunisation Update (which includes COVID-19) and if you haven’t completed your Basic Life Support & Anaphylaxis in the past year, you should also complete this.
You will be an asset to any team once you are trained up. In addition to the training recommendations, you should ideally have some supervised practice too. The training that you will need is Foundation in Immunisation (including COVID-19) and if you have not completed your Basic Life Support & Anaphylaxis in the past year, you should also complete this.
It is highly likely that all health professionals will need to get involved in the immunisation campaign. The National Minimum Standards in training apply to all healthcare professionals. As you have not vaccinated in a long period of time, we would recommend the Foundations in Immunisation (including COVID-19) and a course in Basic Life Support & Anaphylaxis if you have not completed this in the past year.