Hospitals and GPs in east London to start receiving Covid vaccines in early December
- Credit: PA
Covid vaccination sites are starting to be identified as the east London NHS prepares to start vaccinating the most vulnerable residents in early December.
A meeting of Havering’s Health and Wellbeing board heard hospitals are due to receive vaccines from December 1, while GPs may receive them from December 7 onwards.
Sarah See, primary care transformation director for Havering and Redbridge NHS, said Chingford Leisure Centre, Westfield Stratford and two sites in Beckton and Dagenham will offer mass vaccinations, seven days a week for 12 hours a day.
She added that the NHS is trying to identify more sites – at least one per borough – but needs to “make sure they can manage social distancing and be accessible” for a large number of people.
Ms See said: “We were expecting the primary care vaccine to start December 1 but now it’s a week later.
You may also want to watch:
“That’s probably for the best actually because there is a lot of work to get these sites up and running.
“(Primary care sites) will be given 10 days’ notice so, unless we hear from this Friday, we know they won’t receive them on December 7.”
- 1 Illegal car meet in Rainham sees 49 fined for Covid breaches
- 2 Letters: Social distancing, vaccination experience and how to stop catalytic converter thefts
- 3 Infection rates are now falling in Havering - is lockdown working?
- 4 Havering parks and gardens five feet under water as rivers burst their banks
- 5 70% of Havering residents voted to leave the EU
- 6 'It was surreal': Hornchurch personal trainer wins £10k with family on TV gameshow
- 7 Fines issued to Romford and Upminster restaurants flouting coronavirus restrictions
- 8 Doctors and nurses 'exhausted' as hospitals reach breaking point
- 9 Brentwood Tudor church damaged in illegal New Year's Eve party raises nearly £20,000 for repairs
- 10 More than 100 Covid dead at Queen's and King George this week
The board heard the vaccine will first be offered to NHS staff, care workers and those over 85, with some other groups unlikely to be vaccinated until the end of next year.
Havering’s director of public health Dr Mark Ansell noted this means the vaccine is unlikely to have an effect on Christmas celebrations.
He said: “I do not think the vaccines will benefit Christmas. It will only be the most vulnerable in care homes who will benefit.
“(Celebrating Christmas) will definitely come with a risk of increased infections, so hopefully it is something people will think hard about.”
Hospitals will receive the Courageous vaccine created by Pfizer, which needs to be stored in freezers, while GPs and mass sites will receive the Talent vaccine created at Oxford.
Havering public health consultant Elaine Greenway said certain groups unlikely to receive vaccinations until late 2021 could begin being regularly Covid tested in spring next year.
The lateral flow test, which takes half an hour and does not need a lab, could be offered to groups like the self-employed, daycares and older students to detect the virus in those with no symptoms.
She admitted these trials are expected to be “modest” as the council does not have enough staff for a “large scale testing programme”, like the one in Liverpool.