Ask PSNC: Flu FAQs

Ask PSNC: Flu FAQs

October 1, 2018

The team at PSNC has received a number of queries on the NHS Flu Vaccination Service 2018/19. Below are some of the questions asked in recent weeks.

Q. I completed face-to-face training covering injection technique and basic life support last year, but I have been told that unless I vaccinated over a specific number of patients last year I will need to re-do the training again this year. Does this apply to the NHS Advanced Flu Vaccination Service?
No, this does not apply to the NHS Advanced Flu Vaccination Service. NHS England has determined that pharmacists providing the Flu Vaccination Service need to attend face-to-face training for both injection technique and basic life support training every three years, irrespective of how many vaccines are administered each year.

If you are providing private flu vaccinations (not as part of the NHS Advanced Flu Vaccination Service) there may be minimum activity requirements in order for your training to be valid; this should be verified with the private PGD provider.

Q. I completed face-to-face injection technique and basic life support training last year. Do I need to complete online refresher training this year?
No, there is no requirement to complete online refresher training for the national Flu Vaccination Service. Pharmacists may choose to do this or undertake other types of CPD relating to the service, but this is not a mandatory service requirement.

If you are providing private flu vaccinations (not as part of the NHS Advanced Flu Vaccination Service) there may be a requirement to complete online refresher training; this should be verified with the private PGD provider.

Q. Since there is a new Declaration of Competence (DoC) for the Flu Vaccination Service (Vaccination services), is the DoC I completed last year still valid?
Yes. Pharmacists must review their DoC every two years; there is no need for all pharmacists to immediately complete the new single Vaccination DoC unless they have not previously completed a DoC for flu vaccination or they are due to review their DoC.

Q. Should pharmacy teams verify the eligibility of patients requesting flu vaccination under the service?
In many circumstances pharmacy teams will know the patients who are requesting vaccination under the service and they will therefore be able to determine whether a patient falls within an eligible group as a result of the knowledge of the patient and their patient medication record. There will, however, be circumstances where the patient is not known to the pharmacy team. In that case it will be necessary for the pharmacist to talk to the patient and to use their professional judgement to determine whether the patient falls within an eligible group. As part of the service patients must sign a form which contains a declaration that the information they have given in relation to the service is correct and complete.

Q. There is a shortage of adrenaline auto-injectors and we do not have enough stock; how do we proceed?
There is currently a national supply shortage of adrenaline auto-injectors (AAIs) which has an impact on patients and contractors who wish to provide the Flu Vaccination Service. Many wholesalers have therefore restricted supplies of AAIs to ensure it is available for those in immediate need and maintain a sustainable supply. To lighten the demand on AAIs, community pharmacy contractors may want to consider keeping adrenaline 1:1,000 ampoules with graduated 1ml syringes and 23G needles as part of their anaphylaxis kit as recommended in the Green Book.

Please read PSNC’s update on the EpiPen supply issues.

Further FAQs can be found at: psnc.org.uk/fluFAQs



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