So, who is the 'US' in NIMBUS?
Dr Daniel Kimberling, Medical Director at Nimbuscare and GP Partner at Haxby Group, explores who is involved in Nimbuscare and how it works collaboratively to help local people
Prof Mike Holmes is taking a well-earned family holiday this week, so I’m delighted to be guest editing this week’s column. As one of the Medical Directors at Nimbuscare, I wanted to pose the question, “Who is the usin Nimbus?”
The us in Nimbus is your GP practice.
Nimbuscare is now well known for running the local and national Covid Vaccination services in York - where we have had a bumper month, vaccinating 75,000 people in May alone. But not many people know that Nimbuscare is a collaboration of 11 GP practices in the York area. At the vaccination centre you will see your own GPs and practice nurses working alongside hospital, community healthcare colleagues, St John Ambulance, volunteers, and even the military and fire service. So, whilst your vaccine might be given by a practice nurse, a midwife, or even a GP who was come back from retirement to help out, there will always be a GP there to answer your questions when you come. The us in Nimbus is your GP practice. So when you get a text from us, then you can go ahead and follow the link to book your free vaccination.
We’re all the us in Nimbus.
As experts become aware of more Covid-19 variants spreading in the communities, our immediate priority is to make sure we vaccinate all eligible adults with a first dose and help people to book their second appointments. The message is clear, if you’re 30 years old or over, you can book your first vaccine now. And if you know anyone who is eligible who hasn’t had their jab yet, it’s not too late to book an appointment. Just go to nhs.uk. It’s more important than ever to come forward. You see the us in Nimbus isn’t just those delivering the vaccine, you are part of the team effort of Covid response through the protection you give to yourself and those around you by being vaccinated. We’re all the us in Nimbus.
Work isn’t just happening at the site, however. A special outreach team has been working hard to vaccinate homeless people in the community. This is part of a city-wide drive to ensure everyone has the same access to the vaccine. Nimbuscare supplied laptops and dongles to the outreach team at York Medical Group, one of our member practices, so they can check people off the NHS central record system. To date they have vaccinated more than 220 people and next week they’ll be setting up stall at a breakfast club in York to capture more harder to reach patients, offering a vaccine with a hot drink and a sandwich. I truly admire the commitment of this team and we should not forget their important work as they work with City of York Council and Changing Lives to make this happen.
Not many people are aware that we’re also working with asylum seekers in York to make sure they not only get vaccinated, but have the healthcare they need. Many of them have psychological trauma from torture, persecution and the uncertainty of the ultimate outcome of their asylum claim. They need access to healthcare and each of our partner GP surgeries takes responsibility for running a clinic for them. During the pandemic asylum seekers began to be housed in hotels or temporary accommodation, rather than houses of multiple occupation, so they could self-isolate. Paul Mackay, an advanced nurse practitioner at Priory Group GP Practice, has talked about the important work Nimbuscare is doing to meet the healthcare needs of asylum seekers here
This week is Volunteers Week (1-7 June) and a chance to recognise the fantastic contribution volunteers make to our communities and say thank you. Well, what can I say about our remarkable volunteers who have supported the largest vaccination programme the NHS has ever seen? They are truly incredible and have worked tirelessly, not only at the York Vaccination Centre as Askham Bar, but also at our GP Practice and pharmacy vaccination clinics throughout the city. They tirelessly give up their time to help others and, on behalf of everyone at Nimbuscare, I would like to say a massive thank you to all our 400 plus volunteers.
During the coming weeks volunteers will be going the extra mile at the vaccination centre to transform some of flower beds to create a new seating area and memorial garden as a tribute to those who’ve lost their lives. Huge thanks to St Leonard’s Hospice who’ve given us a selection of pots, tools and other equipment to support this work. Anyone who would like to volunteer to help with the project can contact us by e mail at firstname.lastname@example.org Donations of plants, compost and other materials are also welcome.
I would also like to mention the important work we’re doing with the Wilberforce Trust to provide better access for people with hearing and sight impairments coming to the vaccination centre. Many people who’ve already been to the site will know it can be confusing for people with eye-sight difficulties and the acoustics, in the cabins especially, is not ideal. So, our work with the Wilberforce Trust has been really helpful – they have given us leaflets and signage in braille and we also now offer a sign language service.
We’ve made other adjustments - people who struggle with background noise can have their vaccination in a quieter area. If you need additional support, please contact our helpdesk before you visit, or just let our volunteers know when you arrive for your appointment.
I hope you can see from the huge amount of work outlined here that we’re leaving no stone unturned to make sure everyone gets their vaccine as quickly as possible. So, please, if it’s the only thing you do this week, book in for yours today!