Latest COVID-19 vaccination update...
Across west Essex more than 107,400 people have now received their first dose of the vaccine with those aged 50 and over now being invited for theirs.
Earlier this month a second large centre site opened at the Murray Hall Community Centre in Loughton, joining Harlow’s Leisurezone and five GP-led sites in west Essex.
We had some great news for the Lord Butler Community Centre in Saffron Walden, which was identified as one of the best performing in the country. Read the full story.
The vaccination programme will have reduced supply from Monday 29 March so first doses will not be given. Second doses are not affected and will continue.
So if you are in an eligible group – meaning you are 50 or over, have a health condition that puts you at greater risk, or are a health or social care worker – and you haven’t booked your first dose yet, the time to do so is right now.
If you already have an appointment over the coming weeks, whether for your first or second dose, this remains in place and it’s really important that you attend it as planned.
Appointments for first doses are still available for the rest of March, but they are filling up fast.
Appointments can be booked at nhs.uk/covidvaccination, or by phoning 119. British Sign Language, text relay and interpreter services are available.
You still have the choice of waiting to be contacted by your GP practice.
As we move on to new age groups, the National Booking Service has stepped up a text message service for COVID-19 vaccination invitations and reminders.
This approach is helping the NHS issue invites to eligible groups more quickly and is more convenient for lots of people, particularly those in younger age groups.
The text message will be sent using the Government’s secure Notify service and show as being sent from NHSvaccine. You can trust your text message is genuine if it comes from ‘NHSvaccine’, includes a link to the NHS.uk website and gives you the option of phoning 119.
Always remember that:
- The NHS will never ask you for your bank account or card details.
- The NHS will never ask you for your PIN or banking password.
- The NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to administer the vaccine.
- The NHS will never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport, driving licence, bills or pay slips.
The MHRA, the European Medicines Agency and the World Health Organisation have all been absolutely clear that the vaccines are safe and effective, and people should go and get their COVID-19 vaccine when asked to do so. A further trial from the USA this week has also reinforced that.
The same vaccine should be used for both doses.
The Essex-wide Coronavirus site has a wealth of information to keep you up to date while the Healthier Futures site contains lots of useful information in different languages, frequently asked questions and up-to-date information on vaccinations in Hertfordshire and west Essex.
Whether you have had one, or both, vaccinations it is vital everyone continues to follow the social distancing rules in place to protect everyone, to help keep the virus at bay.