COVID-19 update: Autumn/Winter Plan, End of shielding, Vaccinations for 12 to 15s, Booster jabs, Foster carers

Autumn/Winter plan

The Prime Minister has set out the government’s COVID-19 Response – Autumn and Winter Plan 2021 for managing COVID-19 at a press conference. The publication outlines the government’s “Plan A” for the autumn and winter, and “Plan B”, which would be enacted if data suggests further measures are necessary to protect the NHS. Case rates are still high and our hospitals are still under pressure – so we would continue to encourage everyone to be mindful and take precautions to protect yourselves and others.

End of shielding

Government ministers have decided to end the option of advising Clinically Extremely Vulnerable individuals to shield, to close the Shielded Patient List (SPL) and end the Shielding Programme as a contingency support offer. This means that people previously identified as CEV will not be advised to shield in the future, and the Government will not be providing specific national guidance for them to follow.

The Government is writing to all CEV individuals to inform them of this decision. You can see a copy of this letter attached or by clicking here to view it online. The letter includes further information on the vaccine programme (including potential boosters/third doses), further information on new treatments and therapeutics, and signposting to mental health support.

As has been the case in the past, SCDC is working with County Council colleagues on a joint localised letter to follow on from this letter from central Government, to give more local information on support. This will include how local groups in communities may be able to help.

Vaccinations for schoolchildren aged 12 to 15 years old

The Government has announced that children aged 12 to 15 are eligible to have their vaccine. For healthy children of this age attending schools in South Cambridgeshire, vaccination clinics will be offered in schools, coordinated by the schools’ immunisation teams, who usually do school-based immunisations. In our area this is being run by Hertfordshire and East Anglia Community and School Age Immunisation Service. Within the next week, families should start receiving a letter detailing when their child’s school’s clinics will be held. Alternative provision will be arranged for children who are home schooled, in secure services or in specialist mental health settings.

For 12 to 15 year olds who are from CEV/immunosuppressed households, if the child/young person attends a SEND school in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, they will be contacted by their school offering a date for vaccination in the school setting. Otherwise, parents/carers of eligible children will shortly receive a letter from their GP Practice with details of where they can be vaccinated.

Booster jabs

To maintain the high level of protection through the coming winter, booster vaccines have started being offered from this week to those adults more at risk from serious disease (priority groups one to nine), which includes:

  • those living in residential care homes for older adults
  • all adults aged 50 years or over
  • frontline health and social care workers
  • all those aged 16 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19, and adult carers
  • adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals.

All those eligible will be able to receive their booster dose six months after their second dose. The NHS will contact people directly to let them know when it is their turn to get their booster vaccine. As with the previous rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to adults, the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group is coordinating this locally.

Could you be a foster carer?

Life as a foster carer is rewarding, and no two days are the same. With the continuing impacts of COVID being felt in all our communities, there has never been a better time to consider fostering as a career. So, if you want to make a real difference to children’s and young people’s lives, then Cambridgeshire County Council wants to hear from you. They are there to support you every step of the way; supporting you, and providing the best care for our most vulnerable children and young people. Becoming a foster carer normally takes four months, and the County Council offers generous allowances, round the clock support and a dedicated Social Worker. Find more information on the County Council’s website, or contact their recruitment team on 0800 052 0078 or by email.

Fibre Broadband – Call for Action

Our proposed “Community Fibre Partnership” with Openreach to bring fibre broadband to Shudy Camps should soon be approved by the Government. There are 107 premises in Shudy Camps that could benefit, and Openreach need to get over 90 pledges to qualify for enough voucher funding to proceed. A form to complete is here and the Terms and Conditions of the voucher scheme can be seen here.

Safety Camera Works from Linton to Horseheath on the A1307

The Greater Cambridge Partnership and contractors Milestone Infrastructure will be commencing the installation of average speed cameras on the A1307 from Linton to Horseheath on 19 April 2021. The works will continue for about three months.

The new average speed cameras are designed to improve safety and reduce accidents by regulating and reducing speeds along this section of the A1307.

Average speed cameras have a proven track record of reducing the number and severity of collisions, changing driver behaviour and achieving a high degree of speed compliance. The new average speed cameras will monitor all the vehicles travelling in both directions along A1307 from Linton to Horseheath.  The scheme has been consulted upon with Cambridgeshire Police and local stakeholders and was widely supported during public consultation in 2018.

What works will be done?

  • Installation of cable ducts along the road verges to enable power to be provided to the new average speed camera sites.
  • Installation of the average speed camera poles and cameras.
  • Associated road markings and signage.

Traffic management during construction

All efforts will be made to keep disruption to a minimum. However, for safety reasons there will be a number of necessary changes whilst these works take place. These will be:

  • Temporary 40mph speed restriction for full extent of works including A1307 Linton bypass and the single carriageway section from Linton to Horseheath bypass
  • Lane closures in either direction on the dual carriageway section between Linton and Horseheath
  • Use of temporary 2-way traffic lights during off-peak working hours will be implemented on the single lane carriageway section between Linton and Horseheath
  • Side road closures of Dean Road with associated diversion routes will be in place for the duration of the works

Milestone Infrastructure and their sub-contractors will be implementing safe working practices to ensure that the works are undertaken in accordance with current Public Health England and Government guidance for Covid-19 restrictions.

We would like to apologise for any inconvenience these works may cause. However, when completed these works will improve road safety for all road users travelling on this section of the A1307.

How do I keep up to date with the project?

Please visit the project’s web page at www.greatercambridge.org.uk/A1307

If you have any concerns during construction, please do get in touch with Skanska’s project team on A1307schemes@skanska.co.uk or telephone Cambridgeshire County Council’s Contact Centre on 01223 699906.

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