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  • COVID-19 vaccine update for people with underlying health conditions and unpaid carers

    Created: 23/02/2021

    People with underlying health conditions and unpaid carers are beginning to receive coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccinations.

    On 22 February 2021, the Scottish Government provided details of who is included in Priority group 6 - one of the largest on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) list.

    The first to be invited will be people who have conditions that are included on both the JCVI priority list and the flu vaccine list. Although there is some overlap, the two lists are not exactly the same. They will be invited at the same time as unpaid carers who receive carers’ benefits or who have been identified by GPs.

    Carers who do not receive carers benefits, and who have not been identified by GPs, will be asked to come forward to register for their vaccine at a later date through an online portal or the national helpline. Work is also ongoing to identify people with underlying conditions who are not on the modified flu vaccine list, and they will be invited shortly.

    Anyone aged 70 or over who has not yet been invited for their vaccine should visit for further advice, or call the national helpline on 0800 030 8013.

    NHS Fife provided an update on the delivery of vaccine appointment letters for these groups:

    "Letters via the national appointment scheduling tool will start arriving on Monday 22nd February inviting those in priority group 6 - those "at risk" and "unpaid carers" age 16-64 to attend one of NHS Fife's Community Vaccination clinics for their COVID-19 vaccination.

    Due to the speed of rollout and large size of this priority group, the identification of those deemed "at risk" or those defined as "un-paid carers" will continue over several weeks.

    It is therefore likely that individuals that fit into these definitions will receive their appointment letters via the national scheduling system in a staggered way over time

    The appointment letters for next week will be delivered by Royal Mail in blue envelopes including some appointments being scheduled for Tuesday 23rd February.

    We recognise that for some receiving a letter on Monday for an appointment the following day may be too short notice to make arrangements to attend their allocated appointment.

    On this basis if individuals are not able to attend, we ask that they call the number on their letter to reschedule".


    JCVI priority group 6 includes people aged 16 to 64 with the following conditions:

    • a blood cancer (such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma)
    • diabetes
    • dementia
    • a heart problem
    • a chest complaint or breathing difficulties, including bronchitis, emphysema or severe asthma
    • a kidney disease
    • a liver disease
    • lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as HIV infection, steroid medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy)
    • rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or psoriasis (who may require long term immunosuppressive treatments)
    • who have had an organ transplant
    • have had a stroke or a transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
    • a neurological or muscle wasting condition
    • a severe or profound learning disability
    • a problem with  the  spleen, such as sickle cell disease, or those who have had their  spleen removed
    • have a BMI of above 40
    • are severely mentally ill


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