The vaccine and its roll out is the most exciting development since the Covid-19 pandemic began. We know that almost everybody is keen to be vaccinated particularly as we are now in a third wave of increased transmission.
In Cheshire and Merseyside, health and care organisations are working together and are steadily delivering the vaccine to those who need it most, as fast as we can. However, we cannot vaccinate everybody at once and there is a planned schedule of delivery targeting particular population groupings, in line with advice from JCVI – the government’s advisors on vaccination.
We hope to have vaccinated everyone in the top four priority groups identified by the JCVI – including older care home residents and staff, everyone over 70, all frontline NHS and care staff and all those who are clinically extremely vulnerable by the middle of February.
If you are in one of these groups, or perhaps you are concerned for someone in your family, please be assured that they will be invited for a vaccine. This could be any time between now and mid-February.
Some people have already been vaccinated and we expect to ramp up the rate of vaccinations from next week. But, please, do not contact your GP or any other agency to try and book a vaccination, or to ask when you will have yours. You will be invited for vaccination as soon as it is possible.
After February, other people will be invited for vaccination in the order of priority of age and health condition until everybody who wants a vaccination has had one. This could take some months.
Remember, the most vulnerable will be vaccinated first. This may not be until mid-February, but be assured, you will be invited for a vaccine as soon as it is available to you.
In addition, you may have heard of the mass vaccination centres that opened today. These provide an additional option and people may choose to use one of these centres by booking an appointment at one of the seven centres through the national booking service online or over the phone. But if this is not convenient, they can still be vaccinated at one of their local vaccination centres in the coming weeks.
People should wait until they are invited and should not call their GP, hospital, CCG or local authority but use the booking line. If an appointment has already been offered by the GP, people can choose which appointment suits them best.