Welcome to our September newsletter. We are now into our 3rd month of lockdown and what can we say – it’s tough! Please hang in there, get vaccinated, get tested if you have symptoms, and adhere to social distancing recommendations. There is light at the end of the tunnel and once those vaccination rates are high enough we should be granted some much needed freedoms.
In this month’s newsletter we will be updating you on the COVID-19 vaccine role out including the anticipated arrival of the Pfizer vaccine and recommendations for Covid-19 vaccination in adolescents and pregnancy. Team YFD are also stepping again in the Central Coast #MoveAgainstCancer to help raise money for Cancer Council and raise awareness of the importance of exercise in reducing risk of cancer.
YFD COVID VACCINATION UPDATE
PFIZER COVID 19 VACCINE COMING SOON
The Pfizer vaccine is COMING SOON for our patients under the age of 60. We will initially be prioritising existing patients of our practice including pregnant patients, those under 18 years and those with underlying medical conditions. Bookings will be available ONLINE ONLY via our hotdoc app when the vaccine is available. Please DO NOT call our reception for updates – this will block phone lines for our routine patient care and emergencies. We will keep you updated here, on our website, facebook and instagram pages when the Pfizer vaccine becomes available for online bookings.
Pfizer appointments will be prioritised for existing patients. We are committed to providing care to our extensive list of regular patients of our practice. As increased stock becomes available we may be able to open up to other members of the community so watch this space. Approximately 40 extra GP practices on the Central Coast are expecting to receive the Pfizer vaccine in the coming weeks which should make Pfizer appointments easier to obtain.
The AstraZeneca vaccine remains available for patients over the age of 60. If you have not been vaccinated we recommend you book a COVID-19 appointment with your doctor now.
If you are aged 18 – 59 years and you are unable to obtain a timely appointment for the Pfizer vaccine, you are able to choose to receive the Astra Zeneca vaccine with informed consent. Please refer to vaccine resource links below so you can make an informed decision or have a chat to your GP.
Due to the current outbreak second doses of Astra Zeneca are recommended between 4 – 8 weeks. At YFD we are presently booking second doses at 6 weeks. If you are aged under 60 and have already had your first dose of Astra Zeneca, guidelines suggest your second dose still be with AZ for protection against severe disease.
Check your eligibility and locations for the Covid-19 Vaccine through the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility checker ) https://covid-vaccine.healthdirect.gov.au/eligibility?lang=en
INFORMATION ON COVID VACCINATION IN ADOLESCENTS
- Children aged 12-15 years will be eligible for vaccination against COVID19 from the 13th September
- Children aged 12-15 in priority groups are already eligible
- individuals with specified medical conditions that increase their risk of severe
- COVID-19, including NDIS participants
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals
- those in remote communities, as part of broader community outreach vaccination programs.
- Pfizer is the only vaccine currently registered for use in Australia in this age group (Moderna is expected to be registered soon). Short supplies of the Pfizer vaccine has been an issue so please be patient (At Your Family Doctors we are expecting Pfizer any day now) .
- The Eligibility Checker is currently being updated for eligibility for the COVID-19 Pfizer (Comirnaty) vaccine. Bookings will be available at the listed locations through the Eligibility checker (link below) for people aged 16 to 39 from 30 August 2021 and for 12 to 15 years from 13 September 2021.
- For more information go to …
COVID VACCINATION IN PREGNANT WOMEN
- If you are pregnant, you are eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccination with the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
- The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG) and the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) recommend that pregnant women be routinely offered the Pfizer or the Moderna vaccine at any stage of pregnancy.
- If a pregnant person contracts COVID-19, they are at a higher risk of severe illness, and their unborn baby is also at risk of being born prematurely or needing hospital treatment. This is why COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for all pregnant people.
- If you are trying to get pregnant or you are breastfeeding, COVID-19 vaccination is also recommended. Please read the following for more information
REMINDER REGARDING TELEHEALTH AND COVID TESTING
Please don’t attend our practice if you have been to any hot spot areas, identified yourself as a close or casual contact to anyone with COVID-19 or have any cough/cold symptoms. Get a covid test instead!
Telehealth appointments are available via telephone or video.
MOVE AGAINST CANCER
Move Against Cancer is back again for September 2021! Dr Ash Bowden together with the Cancer Council are encouraging as many Coasties as possible to keep fit and active, all in the name of raising money for cancer.
#MoveAgainstCancer is a step challenge encouraging you to move more and connect with each other during the month of September. It’s the Central Coast’s biggest step challenge and, after the success of last year we are all excited to make this year bigger and better! The last 18 months have been difficult due to Covid-19 and even though we can’t walk together, the challenge is a great opportunity to connect ‘virtually’ with your team.
YFD is proud to have put together another fabulous team in 2021 to do as many steps as possible throughout the month of September to help raise funds for Cancer Council NSW – Central Coast. 10,000 steps a day is the recommended step goal for a healthy adults, however less than 1 in 5 Australian Adults reach this goal.
Already over 800 Coasties have signed up and $73,085 has been raised to go towards a cancer free future.
If you would like to sponsor our team please follow the link.
Read more of the benefits of Exercise in Cancer reduction in our blog https://yourfamilydoctors.com.au/exercise-and-cancer/
DR ELLY ALPINE EVERESTING CHALLENGE
Dr Elly Warren is at it again! Our bike riding doctor has set herself another gruelling Everesting bike riding challenge to raise money for Cancer research. This time she will be joining other like minded cyclists in Victoria from Jan 21 – 22 to ride 500km over 36 hours, reaching a height of over 10,000m! (that’s actually higher than Everest!)
Her Alpine Everesting team are hoping to raise over $50,000 to go towards Cancer research.
Dr Elly is also passionate about raising awareness of the cancer inequalities in Aboriginal and Torres strait islander communities to help close the gap.
Read more about Dr Elly’s alpine Everesting challenge/ donate by following the link
OUR BOOKS ARE CURRENTLY OPEN TO NEW PATIENTS – FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY
Due to the arrival of two new doctors to our practice we are able to temporarily open our books again to the Central Coast Community. We know that many families on the Coast are struggling to find a regular family GP and the YFD team would love to care for them. Dr’s Abigail Fox, Nick Young, and Jill McDowell are currently available to see new patients. To book an appointment please call reception.
FAREWELL TO OUR RECEPTIONIST JENNY
We are sad to say farewell to our lovely receptionist Jenny who has retired this month. We were lucky to have Jenny help us out in reception 5 years ago on a temporary basis but as our practice grew we needed her on a more regular basis. It might not have been Jenny’s plan to stay with us for 5 years but thank you for sticking with us! Enjoy your well-deserved retirement.
So that’s it for our September Newsletter, stay safe everyone, keep healthy and we will be back soon with more news. In the meantime like us on facebook or instagram to keep up to date with the latest Covid changes, important health information and to see what the YFD team has been up to. Our website is also a great source of information, so please check out our blog for health information written by our team. Stay well.
Love Team YFD xx