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patsylabrador

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Said on TV yesterday that France is developing some treatment that dramatically reduces the chance of having to go into intensive care. Whatever this is wasn't specified, but extended trials in hospitals have begun. In the meantime the vaccination programme continues at a snails pace with only 80% of care home residents and only 20% of over 75's vaccinated and they didn't say whether it was the first or second jab? Also mentioned were the sniffer dog trials; dogs that can smell the virus. So far the accuracy rate is 95% both here and in Germany. The idea is to screen airport arrivals much faster than is currently possible by testing.

The Astrazeneca vaccine being rolled out now is only available to under 65's with an underlying health problem or those that are in jobs with general public contact. We don't fit in either category. Apparently once the 10 dose bottle is up to usable temperature it lasts just 5 hours, so the GP's are having to ensure that the daily 10 or 20 are definitely going to be there.

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Lateral flows are abnout 75% reliable and picked up on our 8 cases at work. If you test positive for this you need a PCR which is the swab of throat and nose and long wait. 

Temperatures are not reliable as you are measuring skin temp and not body temp. if the care home residents have had 2 jabs and visitors wear PPE that should help, however I do worry that the ones with dementia might find mask wearing relatives alarming in some cases. 

Have to say UK has done a great job with the vaccine, but people are now thinking they can go out and mix. Why are people so stupid? 

sorry problems with forum - the laughing emojis were an error. 

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Well Alis Girls, I have to laugh because there is no point in getting wound up about it. Just a shame I'm in the wrong country at the moment. Being realistic we're never going to get vaccinated because before they get to us they will have to be starting the repeat doses; it's taken two months to do a quarter of the over 75's so they will finish after 8 months and be starting all over again. Even if they speed up they won't be able to get to the healthy under 65's.

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Has anyone else had an invitation to book both their jabs, only to find that the nearest vaccination centre on the offered list is 40 minutes away?!

There's one just over a mile away - what's wrong with that?

I wouldn't mind, but I have just been listening to the news and the boasting about all towns sporting vaccinations centres in local surgeries, health centres and pharmacies... errr :doh:

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There was a post on our village Facebook page on Saturday saying that age 56 were being called so I went online to book and was able to choose Kassam Stadium at Cowley, only about 15 mins from us for both 1st and 2nd dose. However, I have heard, from our postie, that she booked at Kassam for the first dose and was then re directed to High Wycombe (about 40 mins away). I can only guess it's availability. DM, you could try dialing 119 and speaking to a real person (although it takes about 10 mins to get through!)

Our surgery has been calling some people, usually mid to late afternoon as they never know when or how much they will get and sometimes end up with spare towards the end of the day. 

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Good news for those wanting to visit France from the UK today. To get in you no longer need a 'compelling reason', although you still need the 72 hour PCR test both ways and I think comprehensive health insurance now as well?

Todays news covered the growing controversy with the AstraZeneca vaccine, with Iceland, Norway and Denmark stopping their vaccination programmes with it. The reason is side-effects, particularly blood clots. They said that 0.15% of people having the Pfizer jab had side effects, ).1% with Moderna, but with Astrazeneca it's 1.1% and of those 0.4% (a third) are hospitalised. Of course the reason you are taking the vaccine in the first place is to avoid being hospitalised. They are also complaining that you don't get a choice and you don't know until you get to your appointment, at which time some people are now refusing it, which is why there are doses left over. Seems the French are waiting for the Johnson vaccine, which is far less effective than the others but needs only one shot. Sure it will all become clear in the end.

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Yes, I saw that news Beantree, although I'm  not sure how easy it is for anybody to get out of the UK at the moment.  Australia is super-strict and you need an exit visa to leave, my niece was unable to leave recently for her grandmother's funeral, although the decision was reversed at the last minute after quite high level lobbying so she was able to attend in the end.  We are waiting for our border restrictions to be lifted so we can leave Portugal to visit my 93 year old MIL in France.  It won't be until after Easter at the earliest as we are concerned about the overnight stay when travelling, and in any case I don't think international travel will be on the cards till then, if then.  Portugal has gone from the worst place in the world at one point in January for new cases, to the best place in Europe last week, and we feel a bit anxious because we know rates are still high in France, and there is resistance to having a vaccine, so I'm very interested to read your explanation.  My OH won't be able to have the Moderna/Pfizer jabs as he has had anaphalasis, he will have to have AZ or J&J.

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Rates are extraordinarily high in parts of France Daphne and very low in others. Hot spots I can remember are Dunkerque, Calais, Paris, Nice and the region of Moselle, which has had its border to Germany closed. These places are under a weekend curfew (except Paris which is at 90% care capacity??), but the 6.00pm one remains throughout France. Some intensive care patients are being moved to Belgium. There was a chap on TV last week explaining his surprise to wake up in Switzerland. So it depends whereabouts in France you are going.

We won't be taking the AZ based on what was said today and won't be on the list for ages anyway. Just read my last post and the Moderna level of side effects was supposed to read 0.1%. The Government statement on AZ was that the benefits outweigh the risks, but we don't agree with that at all. We rarely go out and always follow the rules, so we think the risk with AZ vaccine to our health is much higher than catching Covid.

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OH and I both had our vaccines booked at Kassam Stadium for next weekend but I got back from lateral flow testing at boys school yesterday to find he'd had a call from the GP to see if he wanted to go down for his 1st dose yesterday afternoon. No clue why; he is 6 months younger than me and not 56 yet, no underlying health probs. He had the Oxford jab and woke this morning at 3am feeling dreadful and has been shivery and headachey since then. I keep telling him that at least it proves that its working but I don't think he finds that helpful! I'm hoping for a call from the GP next week to avoid trogging into Oxford.

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I now know very well 7 people who have had the AZ jab and can detail all their side effects.

1. 70+ woman - sore arm for a couple of days

2. 70+ man with asthma - sore arm and felt fluey for a few days

3. 60+ woman with asthma - none

4. 60+ man - headache for 24 hours

5. 60+ woman - none

6. 50+ man with rheumatoid arthritis - very sore arm for 3 days

7. 30+ woman carer - worst headache she’s ever had for 24 hours

So - yes - some of them are unpleasant, but all of them are temporary and none of them are as bad as Covid. Here are loads of people I know of or have heard of who have had it - all AZ that I’ve heard, and only one person with worse side effects than any of those and even then it was feeling fluey for 10 days - certainly nothing requiring hospitalisation. 

The track record of French and German interpretation of research and effectiveness of these vaccines hasn’t been great in the past couple of months.

Yes, think for yourself, but if you intend to mix with other people, please, please get vaccinated. Think of the people who cannot have a vaccine, and have yours to protect them.

*climbs down*

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Beantree, at one level your post is reassuring, we drive up the west/middle to get to Normandy, so not near the hotspots you mention, but I will keep a watching brief, no doubt these things are changing all the time.  Just today Germany announced it is lifting quarantine restrictions on parts of Portugal, which is a bit of good news in the doom and gloom, although none of us can leave without a very good reason.

Thanks for posting, MT, its interesting to hear first hand experiences, and personally I agree with what you say. I'm with CT on this, whatever I am offered, I will very happily take.  Soapdragon, I hope your OH feels better soon.

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My 1st this afternoon and will be AZ. OH was genuinely very poorly for 36 hours last week - stinking headache, shivers etc. Neighbour 3 doors down had his 2 weeks ago and ended up in A and E with horrendous muscle pain and had to have steriods - he's still a bit wobbly. Most people I've talked to in the village who have had AZ at our surgery report fairly nasty flu' ey symptons for anywhere up to 5 days so, whilst I am very pleased they have finally got round to me, I am a tad nervous but telling myself I WONT have any side effects!

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Unfortunately Daphne, Normandy is on the 'being watched closely' list because it has seen a 20% increase in cases in one week. Two thirds of all cases in France are now the English variant, so the containment attempts I mentioned a few weeks ago failed. But I think they got on top of the South African outbreak? There is a new variant in Brittany now which isn't any more contagious than the original but it can't be detected with any of the current tests. Only 8 cases reported. Departments in the Northeast will be locked down for a third time but to a lesser extent than the first two. Hospitals are at breaking point and patients are still being transferred by train to the Western cities. A spokeswoman for the medical services said it would be three weeks before the lockdown impacts on the available medical facilities so it is going to get far worse and why did the Government act so late?

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Hope all goes well.  I had mine a few weeks ago and only felt bad the day after.  I had a headache and generally felt not quite right but slept most of the day.  The following day I was fine.  

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Thanks for the update Beantree, it chimes with personal experience as just yesterday my MIL's care home announced another covid case - someone discharged there as a new resident from hospital, so all visiting is stopped.  The protocol is that new residents are isolated for 7 days, and given a test, which was positive unfortunately.  Good news is that they had a largish outbreak months ago, which was well contained, although sadly one person did die.  Bad news is that its on my MIL's floor.   As far as I can see the UK is doing exceptionally well at vaccinating people, but still has a lot of cases per day, Portugal has got the case numbers right down and vaccination rates are OK (better than some other EU countries but not wonderful), whereas France seems to be in a bad mix of poor vaccination rates and high new daily cases.   My sense is that the English variant has played havoc in Europe as its so transmissible, but that a strict lockdown does work.  I understand in France you have a 6pm-6am curfew already so that's a step in the right direction, although as OH pointed out, presumably that means all shopping has to be squeezed into the day, rather than spreading it out by going a bit later.

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Hope it doesn’t make you feel too poorly SD.

The situation in France really isn’t looking great but it’s certainly not the only place unfortunately.

We are getting on really well with vaccinating in the UK but numbers do seem to be just creeping up again in Cornwall at least. I guess it’s inevitable as schools going back have increased mixing. What worries me is that once we start to unlock in 10 days it’ll be all the unvaccinated younger people suddenly starting to mix so much more both for work and for pleasure, and that is likely to send numbers shooting up. I know that shouldn’t create so much serious illness and load on the NHS with the more vulnerable groups protected by the vaccine, but I still can’t help thinking it could undo all the work done by he lockdown to get the numbers down.

It really is such a difficult balancing act for the economy and people’s mental health, and easy for me to say with a job in the public sector, but personally I’d be more comfortable with lockdown continuing until all adults had had at least a first dose of the vaccine.

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New cases here in France are now soaring; 35,000 yesterday up from 26,000 a week ago. They have stopped mentioning the UK's vaccination performance, in fact it has been excluded from being in Europe when the vaccination rates in Europe were disclosed today. Guess it's all too embarrassing for them.

The Oxford (they don't use that name here) Astrazeneca vaccine, withdrawn for a week, has now been re-approved, but only for the over 55's. Apparently the rare brain blood clotting cases are in the under 55's age group. They have added that they can't find any medical reason for that. The backlash is that the French are now refusing that vaccine almost completely so we really are in a mess as fewer people have access to the Pfizer and the other vaccines aren't available yet. The Russian Sputnik 5 will be manufactured under licence in several laboratories in Europe but isn't yet approved.

For some reason, unexplained so far, the National curfew has been relaxed and it's now 7.00pm? Schools remain open, but 2000 of the 500,000 classes are closed due to infection. Some hospitals are now completely full and are turning patients away. All very depressing.

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Had my second jab today. Yes some people react more than others. I dont know anyone who's been hospitalised after vaccine. They might have been brewing covid-  happened to several at work and a couple of days after vax were ill- with covid. Bear in mind a worse reaction means body is working hard to protect you in the future. 

Also bear in mind covid can cause blood clots - vaccine cant. Lot of cr-p being written . I didn't mind which I got. No you dont have a choice and frankly I dont think you should be choosy unless you have a medical issue . But I know some people will disagree. 

As I posted before some people are dam right difficult. So so stupid as it will take us longer to get back to some sort of normality. 

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Had my vaccine yesterday afternoon and woke up at 2am with stinking headache, dry mouth, nausea, high fever (38.1) and the shakes. In spite of paracetamol and ibuprofen every 2 hours this continued and have been feeling so tired and 'out of it' all day. Keep telling myself that it is proving that the vaccine is in my system and busily producing the required antibodies. Most people that I have spoken to in the village have had a similar reaction to the AZ but, given the alternative (full blown Covid) it's def worth it!

Yet more pics in the news today of demos in London by anti lockdown idiots, none wearing masks - grrrrr! 

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Sorry you had such a severe reaction. Your body is producing antibodies. Keep drinking plenty and rest up. You are right full blown disease is dreadful. My arm is now tender. Taken paracetamol and might got to  bed. 

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