Patient receiving a vaccine jab

More than 30 new vaccination centres open in NHS drive

Sites in Blackpool, Sunderland and London among others are set to come online, as the NHS’ Covid-19 vaccination drive opens another 30 new vaccination centres to accelerate delivery of the jab.

These new centres mean the UK network of large scale facilities is now up to 50 sites, capable of providing the vaccine jab to thousands of people a week across the country.

People aged 75 and over are now being invited to book a vaccination at the centre, or one of the more than 70 pharmacy services now operating across the country.

Should they not wish to, or cannot, travel to a vaccination centre, then they can wait to be contacted by their local GP-led service or hospital hub to receive their vaccine.

NHS national medical director Professor Stephen Powis said: “The NHS vaccination programme, the biggest in NHS history, is off to a strong start, with NHS staff working hard to accelerate delivery as more vaccines supplies come on stream, while caring for very large numbers of people who are seriously ill with Covid.

“I am enormously proud of their successful so far. We are determined to save as many lives as possible by vaccinating the most vulnerable as swiftly as we can along with those who care for them.”

Vaccine Minister Nadhim Zahawi added: “I am delighted by the outstanding progress we’re already making in the biggest vaccination programme in UK history.

“These 33 new major vaccine centres will bolster our existing network and enable the NHS to protect as many people as possible in the coming weeks.

“It is important everyone continues to follow the rules by staying at home and maintaining social distancing, even if you have had the vaccine, to save lives.”

In line with guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), NHS staff have been working around the clock to vaccinate priority groups. Until recently, those were restricted to people aged 80 and over, along with care home residents and staff, but strong early progress has allowed the UK Government to open vaccinations up to the next cohorts by need and priority; those aged 70 and over and the clinically vulnerable.

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