An Angus woman living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) has been asked to travel to Montrose for her Covid-19 booster – despite being unable to leave her house.
Elizabeth Greig from Edzell received a blue vaccination appointment letter in the post last week asking her to attend Montrose Town Hall for her booster jag.
But she is housebound due to the severity of her MS and received her first two vaccinations doses in her home.
Her husband Bill hit out at the lack of communication about the issue from NHS Tayside.
He fears it’s a widespread error and many more housebound locals will have been affected.
‘The letter’s a mistake – but nobody has been in touch’
He said: “When the blue letter arrived saying Elizabeth had to go into Montrose to get her next dose, I thought it was a mistake they’d made just with her.
“I cancelled the appointment but nobody has been back in touch.
“I wrote about it on Facebook to find out if anyone else had been affected. I heard from a housebound woman in Perth who said she was in the same boat.
“She had been asked to attend the Dewar Centre. My wife’s carer said she also knew of another patient asked to go to Forfar.
‘Deluge of calls’
“My local GP surgery said they’d had a deluge of calls.
“It’s as if there has been a breakdown in the system. The list of housebound patients sent by each surgery hasn’t been matched up nationally. And appointments have been sent out based on the dates of the first two doses.”
‘People won’t know what to do’
Mr Greig added: “I took action right away and challenged it, but perhaps some people won’t. Some will be panicking and thinking – how am I going to do this?
“Lots of elderly people don’t have a car or drive, they won’t know what to do.
“My fear is many people affected will be trying desperately to arrange to get to health centres or vaccination centres to get their jags.”
A spokesperson for NHS Tayside admitted an error had been made and apologised for any inconvenience.
They said: “A number of blue vaccination appointment letters have been sent in error to housebound patients.
“We’d ask any housebound patient who received a letter to cancel their appointment, either on the national online booking system or by calling the national helpline on 0800 030 8013.
“We would like to reassure housebound patients our vaccination team will be in touch to arrange a suitable appointment at home.
“In the meantime, contact our local helpline on 01382 423108 with any concerns.”
A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “Local health boards can offer assistance to those with mobility issues in travelling to and from their vaccination appointment.
“When an individual’s condition means they cannot travel at all, a home vaccination appointment can be organised. People can contact the number on their appointment letter.”