MSP raises concerns about flu jab travel

Craig Hoy, a Conservative MSP for South Scotland, has raised his concerns about elderly and immunosuppressed people from Midlothian being sent to Edinburgh for their annual winter flu vaccine.

Wednesday, 13th October 2021, 6:00 am
Craig at East Lothian Community Hospital

In a letter sent out to those eligible for the winter flu vaccine by NHS Scotland, people from Midlothian have been told to attend their flu jab appointment at the Royal Highland Centre in Ingliston, Edinburgh. Some patients have been asked to make an early morning round-trip of over 40 miles.

NHS Lothian has set up two local vaccination centres to accommodate for those who wish to rebook their appointments locally, located at the Gorebridge Mass Vaccination Centre and Midlothian Community Hospital in Dalkeith – but unfortunately these patients are required to reach out to NHS Lothian by themselves in order to rebook their appointment to a local venue.

Craig (pictured) said: “I am getting emails everyday from elderly and immunosuppressed people from Midlothian who are anxious and confused. Couples are being asked to attend their annual winter flu jab appointments on separate dates at the Royal Highland Centre, and some patients are being sent as far away as Livingston. I have raised this matter with NHS Lothian and the Scottish Government, which is allegedly the result of a computer glitch.

“This situation could have been easily avoided, and unfortunately it makes many elderly and immunosuppressed people less likely to attend their winter flu jab appointments.”

He added: “I will continue to press NHS Lothian and the Scottish Government to pro-actively resolve this matter and reach out to those in need of the winter flu vaccine.”