Family doctors are still in the dark as to how the Covid-19 booster programme, with a new Moderna jab targeting the Omicron variant, will be managed next month

GPs call for ‘urgent review’ of autumn Covid booster campaign amid fears they will be left out of pocket

A new Omicron-specific jab, by Moderna, will be rolled out to the over-50s as part of the UK’s latest vaccination programme due to start in September (Photo Dinendra Haria/LightRocket via SOPA Images)

By Paul GallagherHealth Correspondent

GPs have called on NHS England and the Government to “urgently review” plans for the autumn Covid booster campaign amid fears they will be left paying for the programme out of their own pockets.

The UK Health Security Agency announced it will offer a new Omicron-specific jab, by Moderna, to the over-50s, as part of its latest vaccination programme due to start in September. NHS England had been expected to announce details of the programme on Wednesday but it is believed to have been delayed because of a row between GPs and the Government over how it will be managed.

The default contract for delivering vaccines this autumn has been cut from £12.58 per dose to £10.06, while a £10 supplement for them to give jabs in care homes and to other vulnerable groups has also been cut, the British Medical Association has said. Rising staffing and energy costs have also led to surgeries’ operating costs increasing significantly, leaving many wanting to opt-out of delivering more Covid jabs.

Dr Lizzie Toberty, GP lead at grassroots lobbying organisation Doctors’ Association UK, told i: “Practices have looked at available funding to provide the latest Covid vaccine and it simply isn’t viable. The money for previous rollouts, which has now been reduced or removed, comes on the back of increases in staff costs with the recent pay uplift [part funded from existing NHS budgets], and also increased energy costs.

“Nobody’s asking to make money on this but we can’t deliver a vaccine programme at a loss. That can’t come out of individual GP partners’ pockets, so the funding needs to be urgently reviewed or an alternative programme or provider sought. But that would mean patients making two trips to have a Covid and flu vaccine which can be delivered at once.

“And I find it really concerning that in the middle of August we don’t know how we are going to run a vaccine programme that is supposed to be rolled out in September. There needs to be more understanding from the Government and NHS England as to what the likely costs GP practices will incur and then to work with practices to deliver the programme. Right now though it’s all looking very uncertain.“

The Royal College of GPs will raise the issue at one of its regular catch-ups with NHS England this week. RCGP chair Professor Martin Marshall said it was “understandable” that some surgeries do not want to sign up to the autumn rollout, given the intense pressure primary care is already under.

He said: “We would of course welcome any initiatives that would free up and build capacity in general practice to allow more practices to participate in the rollout of the booster programme, if that is the barrier stopping them. More widely, ahead of what is likely to be a very tough winter for the NHS, we need to see urgent support for general practice, including immediate action to stop unnecessary bureaucracy, so that GPs can focus on delivering patient care.”

Health officials said it was not fair to call for an “urgent review” of the rollout with plans not yet finalised and the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation having only issued its guidance on the latest booster programme on Monday. A spokesman for NHS England said it will be outlining plans for the autumn booster campaign “in the coming days”.

NEWS RELATED

SEC Charges Crypto Firm Hydrogen Technology With Market Manipulation, Selling Unregistered Securities

The SEC alleges that Hydrogen has been involved in unregistered offers and sales of securities in the form of its Hydro token.

View more: SEC Charges Crypto Firm Hydrogen Technology With Market Manipulation, Selling Unregistered Securities

Dr Hilary issues major warning to parents over popular drink that kids love

DR HILARY Jones has warned parents to be vigilant when it comes to what their children consume. The resident Good Morning Britain doctor this morning said children are skipping breakfast and are instead supping energy drinks on the way to school. Dr Hilary Jones this morning issued a warning ...

View more: Dr Hilary issues major warning to parents over popular drink that kids love

New Technology Could Reduce the Side Effects of Common Medicines

85% of health professionals surveyed said they would use the tool. Artificial intelligence might help doctors in determining whether individuals are likely to have adverse effects from widely used antidepressants, antihistamines, and bladder medications. An evaluation of a new tool to determine which medications are more likely to have ...

View more: New Technology Could Reduce the Side Effects of Common Medicines

Op-Ed: The technology to fight climate change that we’re not using nearly enough

This summer, I descended more than 6.7 miles to the bottom of the Pacific Ocean in a two-seat submarine to the world’s deepest undersea chasm, the Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench. My goal was to explore a previously unvisited area of the trench and use high-resolution sonar to ...

View more: Op-Ed: The technology to fight climate change that we’re not using nearly enough

Ian Targets Central Florida After Leaving Path of Destruction Along Gulf Coast

Hundreds of thousands of Floridians had been given mandatory evacuation orders in anticipation of powerful storm surge, high winds and flooding rains from Ian as it moves near Orlando.

View more: Ian Targets Central Florida After Leaving Path of Destruction Along Gulf Coast

Man in his 20s dead after Hamilton house fire: police

Hamilton police say a man is dead after he was found at the scene of a house fire on Wednesday night. Police say officers responded shortly after 8 p.m. to a house fire on Traymore Avenue, close to McMaster University. They say firefighters found a man in his 20s without ...

View more: Man in his 20s dead after Hamilton house fire: police

Why this Atlantic outpost is the most underrated winter-sun destination in the world

Traditional fishing boats on Sao Vicente – Getty Some countries shine brightly on the map of the world. Your eye is drawn to them before your brain has clicked into gear. The US is one of them. So is France. So is Italy, as it dangles its shapely leg ...

View more: Why this Atlantic outpost is the most underrated winter-sun destination in the world

‘An invigorating sense of wildness’: readers’ favourite autumn walks in Europe

Photograph: Darko Vrcan/Alamy Virgin rainforest, Montenegro It’s hard to beat Montenegro’s big hitter for autumn colours: Biogradska Gora national park, one of Europe’s last remaining virgin rainforests. You will find numerous hiking trails under the bronze canopy, glacial lakes, very rare flora and fauna and stunning views of the ...

View more: ‘An invigorating sense of wildness’: readers’ favourite autumn walks in Europe

Soldier in charge of Queen's funeral procession will run London Marathon this weekend after he helped 'ignite renewed patriotism' across Britain

Rafael Nadal and his wife Mery Perello 'are expecting a baby boy' as they prepare to welcome their first child together after 17-year romance

Nude Sunbather Shocked To Find Photo of Herself on Government Site

BYD officially enters Malaysia – distributed by Sime Darby Motors

White House digs in on Biden's gaffe about dead congresswoman: The Note

State agencies push for better worker pay as critical staffing crunch hits Texas government

In West Texas, Fort Stockton’s solution to a teacher shortage is a motel

Asian hornets UK: what do they look like, where have they been found, advice if you see one - are they deadly?

Joined by first Black woman on Supreme Court, justices to tackle affirmative action, voting rights

Here are the major cases before the Supreme Court this fall

Column: Is it a Warhol, or stolen property?

Hurricane Ian swamps Florida coast, knocks out power to 2 million people

OTHER NEWS

Breaking thailand news, thai news, thailand news Verified News Story Network