Update from COVID-19 Vaccination Programme for Cheshire and Merseyside – 22nd April

Supply

As expected, vaccine supply for first doses is still constrained, for the rest of April we are therefore focussed on giving second doses, as well as continuing to reach out to those offered the vaccine who have not yet come forward. They include some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and we are doing everything we can to ensure no one is left behind.  If you or a loved one is in any of the priority cohorts – i.e. over 50 or a health and care worker – please get your vaccination now.

It’s also important to note that even though supplies are constrained right now, second doses are protected. If you have your second dose booked, please keep the appointment. If you are waiting for your second dose – don’t worry, you will be able to get it.

We have started offering first doses to people aged 45 to 49, helped in part by the first small-scale deliveries of the Moderna vaccine in a limited number of sites, including St Helens.

Cohorts

As of April 21, approximately 98% of care home residents have had their first vaccination and 78% having received their second dose in Cheshire and Merseyside. More than 90% of 65-69 year olds have had their first jab and 70% of 50-55 year olds. A total of 1,837 million vaccines have now been delivered in Cheshire and Merseyside. More than 34% of the latest cohort (45-49 year olds) have also had their first dose. The vaccination programme is a huge success and our thanks go out to everyone involved in this work.

Cohort 1 is the highest priority group and includes front line health and care workers. While the vast majority of these staff have taken up the offer of a vaccine, some are yet to get it.  Being vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself, your loved ones and your patients. Don’t get left behind. If you work in health or care, or if you are the carer of a friend or relative, book now.

Pregnancy Advice

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has advised that pregnant women should be offered the COVID-19 vaccine at the same time as the rest of the population, based on their age and clinical risk group.

There have been no specific safety concerns identified with any brand of COVID-19 vaccines in relation to pregnancy.

Real-world data from the United States show that around 90,000 pregnant women have been vaccinated, mainly with mRNA vaccines including Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, without any safety concerns being raised.

Based on this data, the JCVI advises that it is preferable for pregnant women in the UK to be offered the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines where available. There is no evidence to suggest that other vaccines are unsafe for pregnant women, but more research is needed.

The advice, published in Public Health England’s Green Book, a clinical professional guide for vaccinators in the UK, still advises that pregnant women should discuss the risks and benefits of vaccination with their clinician, including the latest evidence on safety and which vaccines they should receive.