ACWY Vaccinations in the United Kingdom for Hajj & Umrah pilgrims and overseas travellers
Online PR News – 16-July-2011 – UK, Over 500 people have now been inoculated against Meningitis(ACWY) as part of a national campaign by the Council of British Hajjis (CBH) a national charity working for the welfare of British pilgrims to Hajj & Umrah and overseas travellers and hundreeds more anticipated for the September clinics in time for the Hajj season.
The ACWY is a requirement for those going on a pilgrimage to Makkah (Meccca, Saudi Arabia) and is being delivered at cost. Doctors and nurses from across the UK are volunteering their services with a volunteer recruitment drive it is attracting many more to help.
Meningitis jabs — essential for the religious pilgrimage of Hajj — can cost anything from £40 upto £80 from a GP, as they are classed as travel vaccines and are not available on the NHS. In some cases people have paid upto £200 for a jab and anything from £10 – £30 for a vaccination certificate which is an essential part of obtaining a pilgrimage visa.
However concerns were raised few years ago and the Council of British Hajjis, a national charity working for the welfare of British pilgrims started to address the issue and delivered with local partners and local NHS a cost-price vaccination service. Originally piloted in Bolton in 2009 around the time of the swine flu outbreak, the service has now taken off like a storm.
Rashid Mogradia, CEO at the CBH “Our travel clinics are now becoming very popular with almost daily requests from volunteers and doctors who would like to offer it in their towns and cities across the UK. Back in 2009 we delivered a similar clinic for the people of Yorkshire in light of the then swine flu outbreak which was very well received. It is clear some GP’s are charging extortionate amounts for a jab, and all we are doing is making it more affordable, encouraging uptake of the immunisations, which should ultimately prevent infections and reduce the burden on local NHS in treating people who become ill. We are also concerned at the rising costs of pilgrimages and will be looking in fine detail at the whole supply chain to bring down prices for the benefit of the public”
Dr Syed Mohiduin, who led the London clinic was proud to be supporting the CBH to deliver pre-travel health and safety advice and administering the jabs “I have lead the FCO British Medical Hajj Delegation for 10 years and understand the value of pre-travel health clinics and need to be inoculated against ACWY and other infectious diseases for a healthy Hajj & Umrah and why I would encourage others to support this initiative. The vaccinations are in line with the Saudi authorities requirement that all pilgrims are inoculated with the ACWY Meningitis vaccine and is an essential requirement for pilgrims to produce certification for a pilgrimage visa”.
Rabia Abowath one of those vaccinated at the Yorkshire clinic said “The service provided to me was excellent and the volunteers were friendly and helpful”
Another patient was Ismail Lajporia who travelled from Blackburn to Batley commented “the service provided by the CBH was very helpful and informative and saved us money, even though we travelled a fair distance. I would like to see more of these types of clinics and seminars taking place”
The CBH will be running travel clinics across the UK for the Hajj season commencing in September, with the next clinic for Yorkshire being delivered on Friday 9th September 2011 and London on 10th September with other locations booked also. To book your jab or for more details on clinics in your area call 0845 833 4145 or visit www.cbhuk.org .
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