The Omicron variant of the virus that causes Covid-19 is spreading very quickly. Numbers of cases are doubling every two to three days. It is likely to overtake the previous delta variant before Christmas and cause a large wave of infections resulting in more hospital admissions than the biggest wave so far, and sadly many deaths.

Two doses of vaccine are not enough to give the level of protection we all need against this new variant, but a third dose boosts protection back up to over 70%.

The NHS has made this its top priority with a target to offer booster vaccinations to every adult by the end of the year.

Our GPs and other Practice staff are helping to deliver the vaccination booster programme here in Bury.  To allow them to focus on delivering vaccinations to as many eligible people as possible as quickly as possible, GP Practices, pharmacists and hospitals will need to pause non-urgent and routine care that can be safely delayed, until the New Year.

We understand that this will be very frustrating, especially for people who have already had to wait to see their GP, but we must take this action now to slow the spread of the virus amongst our communities and health care staff, and prevent many people needing hospital treatment.

Whilst routine and non-urgent appointments that can be safely delayed will be delayed, if you have an urgent issue or worrying symptoms that cannot wait until the New Year, your GP Practice is here for you – please contact the team in the usual way if you need to.

If you’re aged over 18, three months or more have passed since your second vaccine and you’ve not yet had your booster vaccination, please take steps to get protected now.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during what continues to be a challenging time for everyone.