I would like to recognise and say a Big Thank you to everyone in the vaccination teams who have enabled our learning disability patients to have a vaccination as a Primary Care Liaison Nurse (PCLN) working with colleagues from the vaccination team to support people with learning disabilities to have their vaccinations in the community.
Along with support from Intellectual and Development Disabilities colleagues, easy read materials have been developed to support patient understanding by the Speech and Language Therapy Team and individual plans have been developed with reasonable adjustments put in place to support patients to have a person centred approach to having a vaccination in the least restrictive way possible. Planning and working with colleagues from across both primary and secondary care has enabled this to happen.
From meeting patients and families and understanding their personal needs and using either the vaccination centres, home vaccination teams, roving teams, GP practices and the bus have all been explored to find the best way to vaccinate a vulnerable patient group who often have anxiety and phobias around needles.
A recent case I want to share was not possible without the flexibility time and patience of all involved. My patient lives with family and has never had a vaccination ever and has limited capacity around understanding the need for a vaccination. In his best interests with support from those who know him best a number of options were considered involving the PCLN Team and in consultation with the IDD Covid support colleagues and the Vaccination Team lead and GP who supported the plan. With a plan in place the team were able to vaccinate the patient at a time that was suitable, at a venue that was safe and with the preparations in place and use of a vehicle, and the patient had the vaccination without any distress. The family were overjoyed and are already planning for the day when they can travel again on a plane. The plan is the second vaccination which will take place in 8 weeks’ time with the same plan in place.
This is one example where a lot of people from different areas have worked together to plan and enable someone to be vaccinated that otherwise family feel would not have happened.
Initially the family feared it would not happen but I am pleased to say were proven wrong.
We have a number of similar scenarios that I could have shared around the good practice and NHS staff working together across different areas to support patients in the community who are the most vulnerable. The joy from their loved ones is all worth it.
Thank you NHS!
I especially want to say a big thank you to Simon and Jess (You know who you are!!)
Primary Care Liaison Nurse Team Leader (IDD)
Covering Newark & Sherwood
Team leader for Acute Liaison Nurses QMC
Newark Health Centre