Drive-through flu vaccinations to be administered this winter in the doctors' CAR PARKS

Drive-through flu vaccines are said to be given in parking lots by doctors to stop a potential second wave of coronaviruses combined with winter sickness.

Ministers plan to have more than 30 million people vaccinated against the flu to protect the NHS from the double virus threat later this year.

Experts have warned that a flu outbreak in the colder months could destroy the NHS if it coincides with a sharp surge in coronavirus cases.

However, general practitioners have raised concerns about plans to have people pick up their bumps in the surgery parking lots.

NHS England plans to set up vaccination centers modeled on Covid-19 drive-through test areas.

Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty wrote a letter to general practitioners and other NHS chiefs saying they should look into "socially distant innovations like drive-in vaccinations and" car as a waiting room "models at Times reported.

He added that the option to be vaccinated at home should be considered to help those who are shielding themselves.

Drive-through centers are already being used for coronavirus testing, and flu shots can soon be done the same way (Image: A drive-through center in Stone, Staffordshire).

Ministers plan to have more than 30 million people vaccinated against the flu to protect the NHS from the double virus threat later this year (archive image)

Ministers plan to have more than 30 million people vaccinated against the flu to protect the NHS from the double virus threat later this year (archive image)

However, the government has admitted that it may not have enough shocks to meet the NHS goal of immunizing 30 million people in England.

Flu vaccination is offered to everyone over 50, as well as 7th year children and households of those who provide protection.

Though the letter made it clear that healthy people between 50 and 64 would only get the sting if there were enough supplies.

People over 65 and the other groups will have priority. The government has announced that it will buy enough shares to vaccinate 75 percent of eligible people, which equates to about 22 million.

Royal College of GPs director Martin Marshall told The Times: “General practitioners need clear guidance that should be prioritized for flu vaccination outside of those most at risk – and there needs to be a clear public message that it does is the case to manage patient expectations.

Currently, the free NHS flu program is aimed at people 65 and over, pregnant women, people with certain medical conditions such as kidney disease, asthma or heart disease, and caregivers or people in nursing homes.

The flu vaccination, which is designed to fight four different strains of influenza that is expected to circulate, does not offer any protection against the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19.

Most people who get the flu with only mild illness, but those with a severe attack, can be hospitalized. Seasonal flu has a death rate of around 0.1 percent.

A government adviser – Professor Peter Openshaw of Imperial College London – raised the idea of ​​popular flu vaccinations in April and said it was "something that needs to be considered".

Professor Openshaw, part of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG), said a bad coronavirus flu season was "a tremendous burden on the NHS".

Sarah MacFadyen, Director of Policy and Public Affairs for Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation, said: “We welcome this ambitious government plan, but we urgently need more information on how it will be implemented. The flu season is getting closer and health professionals need time to prepare.

& # 39; We know that the intake of the flu vaccine is far too low in people with lung disease as less than half of the eligible people in this group got the sting in the past year. Increasing acceptance by high-risk groups is critical to protecting the most vulnerable in our society.

“To do this, the government needs to make sure that people have easy access to the flu shot and that the message about the importance of getting vaccinated reaches as many people as possible. Everyone, especially people with lung diseases, needs to be reassured that the shock can be delivered in a Covid-safe manner. & # 39;

Covid-19's tell-tale symptoms – fever, cough, and loss of smell or taste – could be mistaken for the flu, which has similar effects and is much worse than a cold.

This could lead to confusion among the population. If they have the coronavirus, they may think that they will only have the flu if they have not been given a vaccine to protect them.

And handing out the flu vaccine, which only 70 percent of eligible NHS workers accepted last year, could prevent thousands of people from needing NHS treatment.

During the height of the UK's coronavirus crisis, around 3,500 people were hospitalized with Covid-19 every day. The disease is estimated to be up to eight times more deadly than the flu.

Studies have shown that every second wave will be more deadly than the first. Data showing that the second attack of the 1918 Spanish pandemic flu was much more deadly than its predecessor.

Imperial College London modeling warned that the death toll could be closer to 500,000 if ministers let the virus spread uncontrollably across the country.

Infectious disease experts say the threat of a second wave is real as so few Britons have been struck down with Covid-19, which spiraled out of control in the UK in March.

The UK is also now far from being able to have herd immunity to the coronavirus. Government polls suggest that 5.4 percent of people in England have had the disease.

This corresponds to around 3.02 million people. 60 percent coverage – believed to be the amount of the population needed for herd immunity – equates to 33.6 million people across the country.

Cold and flu viruses are known to thrive in winter – and scientists fear that the coronavirus will also be a bigger problem in the colder months.

However, experts are wary of whether Covid-19 is a major threat in winter. The disease has only been known to science for six months, which means that little is known about the pathogen.


The results of the first phase of clinical trials with Oxford's vaccine were published on Tuesday in the British medical journal The Lancet.

They revealed that the Covid-19 vaccine had been given to 543 people out of a group of 1,077 people.

The other half received a meningitis bump so their reactions could be compared and scientists could be sure that the effects of the coronavirus bump were not accidental.

The researchers wanted to find out if the vaccine boosted either type of immunity – antibodies, which are disease-fighting substances; and T cell immunity, where T cells are able to produce antibodies and also attack viruses themselves.

The vaccine showed "strong" responses in both cases, the study said.

It found that the T cell response, which targeted the spike protein that appears on the outside of the coronavirus, was "significantly increased" when tested on 43 of the participants in people who had the sting. These responses peaked after 14 days and then decreased before the endpoint of the study after 56 days.

Antibody immunity, on the other hand, peaked after four weeks and stayed high on day 56, the point where the last measurement was taken, meaning it may last longer.

After 28 days, up to 100 percent of a group of 35 people still had a sufficiently strong "neutralizing" immune response to destroy the virus.

A neutralizing response means that the immune system can destroy the virus and not infect the body.

The researchers couldn't test this on more people because they didn't have enough time, they explained.

The scientists had to wait a month after the vaccination, many of them were vaccinated in late May. And Sir Mene Pangalos, vice president of research and development at AstraZeneca, said the tests used were "very tedious," preventing the team from getting more data for the paper in time.

Sir Mene added that the researchers "were heading for a two high dose strategy" as it appeared to elicit the strongest immune response.

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