‘What are you waiting for – get vaccinated NOW!’ say Lincolnshire leaders

Lincolnshire health bossses are warning those not yet vaccinated to get it done now or risk hospitalisation.

Vaccine stock image

NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group is raising awareness of the need to get a covid vaccination to give yourself the maximum protection from the Omicron variant, which is being reported in some instances as a milder condition than previous covid variants.

However, it is now clear that this is only the case for those who have previously had covid or those who are vaccinated. Nationally, statistics show that 61 per cent of those who are in an intensive care bed have had no vaccination and of the remaining patients nine out of ten have not had their booster. In light of this, the NHS is strongly urging everyone who has not had a booster or either of their first and second covid vaccinations to come forward now.

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Rebecca Neno, Director of Covid and Influenza Vaccination Programmes at NHS Lincolnshire CCG, explains: “Across the country and in Lincolnshire, we are seeing the numbers of people with covid in our hospitals increase. This uplift in numbers is mostly amongst younger patients, many of whom are not fully vaccinated and, in some cases, have not been vaccinated at all.

“This is adding to the pressures that are being experienced by the NHS across Lincolnshire, and I would urge anyone who has not had either their first or second vaccinations or booster to come forward now – it is never too late to get vaccinated, and we continue to offer walk-in vaccinations at our two Mass Vaccination Centres (MVCs) at the PRSA, Boston, and at the Lincolnshire Showground. Alternatively you can book an appointment at a vaccination site closer to you via the National Booking System.

“Due to the success of our booster campaign locally, we are temporarily changing the opening hours of our two MVCs at PRSA and the Lincolnshire Showground until January 31, 2022. From Tuesday January 11 the sites will operate from 2pm to 7.30pm weekdays and the hours at weekends remain unchanged from 8am until 7.30pm.

“This change does not, however, mean we are taking our foot off the pedal and it is still vitally important that people who are not fully vaccinated come forwards.”

There will also be a further round of ‘pop-up’ walk-in sessions this week whereby anyone eligible can get vaccinated without an appointment, whether that be a booster (18 and over, 16 and over if you have a health condition which puts you at high risk of getting seriously ill with covid) or for first and second doses (available to anyone aged 16 and over, as well as 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent):

Tuesday January 11 at the Springfields Events and Conference Centre, Spalding, between 10am and 7pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Wednesday January 12 at Wrangle Parish Hall, PE22 9EW, between 9.30am and 2.30pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Wednesday January 12 at the Bud Robinson Community Centre, Lincoln, LN5 8QS, between 10am and 7pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Thursday January 13 at the Engine Shed, Lincoln, between 10am and 7pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Thursday January 13 at St Marys Church Hall, Market Place, Long Sutton, PE12 9JZ, between 1pm and 7pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Friday January 14 at the Stamford Arts Centre, Stamford, PE9 2DL, between 10am and 7pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

Sunday January 16 at Stanhope Hall, Horncastle, LN9 6NF, between 10am and 4pm, including boosters and first and second doses for anyone eligible (see above) including 12-15 year-olds provided a parent/guardian is present to consent.

There is currently plenty of availability for vaccinations either through booking or simply walking in. You can see current availability by visiting www.lincolnshireccg.nhs.uk/grabajab or call 119

In addition to the ongoing booster programme, and the continuing ‘evergreen’ offer providing first and second doses to those who have not had them, the NHS is also very keen for immunosuppressed people who are eligible for their fourth dose, pregnant women and those who are ‘clinically vulnerable’ to come forward.

Finally, locally, as nationally, there has been an increase in the number of people who have booked appointments and not turned up for them.

“We would urge anyone who cannot attend their pre-booked appointment to cancel as this will then allow the slot to be made available for someone else. Alternatively, if you have your appointment arranged with your GP surgery, please contact them to cancel it if you don’t need it/are going to rearrange,” concludes Rebecca.