Two million people across the North West of England have received their Covid-19 vaccine and thousands more are now being asked to book their appointments.
The North West’s 2 million milestone was hit in the week ending Sunday 21 February 2021. Published statistics show that as of Monday 22 February 2021, there had been a total of 1,967,808 first doses and a total of 2,037,564 vaccines given.
Now hundreds of thousands of people across the country who were asked to shield earlier this month are being invited for a Covid jab as the NHS vaccination programme gathers further momentum.
Letters are now landing on the doorsteps of around 445,000 people in England aged 64 who have not yet been vaccinated.
Regional Director of Commissioning (North West) Dr Linda Charles Ozuzu said, “The NHS in the North West has hit yet another incredible milestone in getting more than 2 million people across our communities vaccinated in less than 3 months.
“Such an achievement fills me with pride for everyone who has contributed to this from the NHS teams to local authorities, and not forgetting the wonderful volunteers who have given their valuable time to help get the country moving again. I thank them for their tireless efforts as we move closer to normality once again.”
In the North West, 11 larger vaccination centres have been opened, making use of sports stadiums, racecourses and religious settings as convenient community settings where people can access a vaccine and maintain safe social distancing.
High street pharmacists have also joined the great mobilisation to protect the country, and people in the 65 and over age bracket can get their appointment at a community pharmacy if they prefer.
GPs are currently inviting people who are defined as clinically vulnerable – living with an underlying health condition like chronic kidney or heart disease – to be vaccinated, and people in this group will be contacted by their GP to get their jab.
Following the update to the JCVI’s advice to government yesterday, the NHS has already advised local vaccination centres to offer the vaccine to all adults on their GP Learning Disability register with immediate effect in line with guidance.
Last week the NHS began vaccinating people aged 65-69 years old through the national booking service.
Should anybody aged 65 to 69 want to wait to be called by their local GP vaccination service they are still able to do so.
The first four priority groups, which included those aged 70 and over, care home residents and staff, the extremely clinically vulnerable and NHS staff, were all offered a vaccination by the middle of February, in line with the Government’s target.
People who have received a letter can log on to the national booking service at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination and choose from 11 large scale vaccination centres or 34 pharmacy led sites across the North West.
Anyone unable to book online can call 119 free of charge, anytime between 7am and 11pm seven days a week.
Although having your NHS number to hand will reduce the booking time, knowing it is not required to get a slot for a jab, as anyone in the top six priority groups identified by the JCVI can book their appointment online or by phone.
GPs are contacting those who are housebound to jab them at home.