Local NHS vaccination lead urges people to get vital second jab

As the largest ever NHS vaccination programme enters its last lap, the local NHS vaccination lead has encouraged residents to come forward for their first jab and remember to get their ‘vital and lifesaving’ second dose.

The plea comes as people aged 40 and over are now able to book in their second jab on the national booking system from eight weeks after their first dose.

With everyone over the age of 21 now able to book in for the lifesaving vaccine, eligible people are being urged to get their first or second jab as soon as possible.

NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens announced on Tuesday that all people aged 18 and over will be eligible for the lifesaving jab by the end of the week.

Research this week showed how important the second jab is at protecting people against the Delta/Indian variant.

Studies have found the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to be 96% effective against hospitalisation after two doses, while the Oxford-AztraZenaca is 92% effective.

The last push comes as the NHS in England passed the milestone of having delivered 60 million doses across England in just six months.

Across Frimley Health and Care 757,891 people had been jabbed (as of Thursday, June 10), through 12 local vaccination services, a national vaccination centre and a community pharmacy site – as well as additional mobile vaccination units.

Sarah Bellars, Covid-19 Vaccination Lead for NHS Frimley Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Thanks to the incredible work of NHS staff up and down the country, more than three quarters of adults have received at least one dose of the vaccine, with over half having received both.

“I am thrilled than in our local system so many people have taken up the offer of the jab and in doing so, are helping the country as a whole beat this devastating virus.

“The offer of the vaccine is evergreen, so if you have been invited but are yet to make an appointment, please do so today and bring us one step closer to freedom.”

Hassan Ahmed has had both doses of the vaccine. He said: “I got vaccinated with my 2nd dose as it was really important for me to ensure I had the maximum protection possible, against Covid-19.

“We have all seen the impact of Covid and if this is what I can do to stay safe, then I just don’t see a reason why I wouldn’t. The added value is that my friends and family benefit from me getting vaccinated too, which is great and I am now encouraging others in my friends circle to get the jab too.”

People will receive vaccination invitations by text or phone from their local GP-led service, as well as a choice of appointments via the national vaccination service.

Those wishing to book via the National Booking Service can do so via the weblink they are sent, while people who cannot get online can call the service on 119 for extra support in doing so.

The service will open to those over the age of 18 in the coming days.

Text invitations from the national service appear as an alert from ‘NHSvaccine’, including a web link to the NHS website to making a booking.

Vaccinations are being administered at more than 1,600 sites across the country, including mosques, museums and rugby grounds, meaning the vast majority of the people live within 10 miles of at least one vaccination service.