What we’re hearing: 0800 IMMUNE FAQs
Written by Jennifer Andrews
Dotted across the country are our knowledgeable 0800 advisors manning the phones from 8am – 8pm awaiting your clinical queries. Our advisors have a variety of expertise, ranging from technical writing and practice nursing backgrounds, as well as representing our core IMAC education team, and now our COVID-19 immunisation education facilitators.
Since the introduction of ComirnatyTM the queries have been keeping our advisors as busy as ever, and our daily call numbers have been no less than 200 shared between five advisors with various queries ranging from vaccines on the National Immunisation Schedule, to COVID-19 vaccines, to CIR.
PLEASE NOTE: IMAC cannot help with CIR queries
Here are some of the most common questions we get asked on 0800 IMMUNE:
Q: Consumer has come for their Covid-19 vaccine today, but had flu vaccine over the weekend. Can they have their covid vaccine?
A: YES, ABSOLUTELY. While the recommendation is ideally two weeks between an influenza and COVID-19 vaccine, we should not turn consumers away if they’ve turned up for their COVID-19 vaccine less than 2 weeks after having a flu vaccine.
Q: Consumer is on an immunosuppressive medication; can they have a COVID-19 vaccine?
A: YES. Covid vaccine is an inactive vaccine, therefore a person on immunosuppressive therapy can have their COVID-19 vaccine. If a consumer wants to discuss the optimal timing of their vaccine, they should consult with the GP or specialist before their COVID-19 vaccine appointment.
Q: Consumer has food allergies, can they still have the COVID-19 vaccine?
A: YES. We need to remember the true contraindications to vaccines. That is anaphylaxis to previous vaccine doses or vaccine component. A temporary contraindication is if a person feels systemically unwell with a fever over 38c.
Q: Consumer is currently pregnant, can they have Covid-19 vaccine?
A: YES. Women who are pregnant and at risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 virus can receive a Covid-19 vaccine at any stage of pregnancy. Ministry of Health advice has recently been updated to encourage vaccination in pregnancy.
Our 0800 Team Leader Jan Apps has come up with this slogan that supports many of our Covid-19 vaccine queries: Do not turn away, do not delay, give today, it will be okay.
Read more about assessing eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination centres here, and don’t delay!
Contacting us: Phone 0800 IMMUNE (466 863)
Our 0800 advisors are not able to give cold chain advice over our clinical phone line. If you have cold chain related queries, please contact your Local Immunisation Coordinators, if they are not available, then please contact your IMAC Covid Regional Immunisation Advisor.
Here are a list of our Covid Regional Immunisation Advisors and their contact details:
Northern Region: Lisa Box
Midlands Region: Olivia Haslam
Central Region: Melanie Miller
Southern Region: Sue Rogers