Leeds health chiefs urge all those eligible to book their Covid-19 jab as the roll-out opens up to those aged 36 and over

Leeds health chiefs have urged those eligible for their Covid-19 vaccination to book their jab as soon as possible - as the roll-out opens up to those aged 36 and over.

Tuesday, 18th May 2021, 4:45 pm

The city’s vaccine programme is making “excellent progress” according to Dr Phil Wood, chief medical officer at Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust, who stressed getting vaccinated will protect “both you and others”.

It comes amid continuing concern around the new Indian variant with fears its spread could jeopardise future plans to ease restrictions.

Nationally, as well as the roll-out reaching lower age groups, over 50s are having their second jabs brought forward on the advice of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

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A woman received her jab at the Elland Road vaccine centre in Leeds. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA

The latest figures for Yorkshire and the north east region show a total of 7,555,562 vaccine doses had been administered up to May 16.

Last week it was revealed that of the 376,305 people in Leeds who have now been vaccinated, almost half, 184,140 had received their second dose.

A report to this Thursday’s board meeting of the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust confirmed the city is on target to vaccinate all adults before the end of July 2021.

It said: “Capacity is secure that will enable this to happen in Leeds as long as vaccine supply is sufficient. Capacity is being developed to improve access for some priority groups and for the delivery of second doses beyond July.”

The report said uptake in Leeds is over 90 per cent for the age groups of 65-69, 70-74, 75-79 and over 80s as well as for care home residents and is over 80 per cent for those aged 50-54, 55-59, 60-64 and the clinically extremely vulnerable.

Cohort six, the at risk group and carers, has the lowest uptake, at 78 per cent - in line with the figure for West Yorkshire of 77 per cent.

The report says: “We continue to target the remaining people in these cohorts through a strong health inequalities approach and uptake continues to increase, albeit slowly.”

Dr Wood , who is also the senior responsible officer for the West Yorkshire Vaccination Programme, said: “The vaccination roll-out in Leeds is making excellent progress and we’re now offering vaccinations to people aged 36 and over at all our centres.

“We're also continuing to work with Leeds City Council and our partners to make it as easy as possible for people to get their jab and to bring vaccination services into local communities through pop-up clinics and our vaccine bus.

"Anyone who is 36 or over can book online now without waiting for an invitation or by calling 119.

“We have appointments at our vaccination centres across the city, including our community pharmacy centres and local GP centres so you can choose a time and place that suits you. These are also available to anyone in the nine priority groups who hasn't yet taken up the offer of a vaccine so please do think about booking an appointment if you haven't already.

"Getting vaccinated will protect both you and others and we're asking people to help us to help them by booking their jab as soon as they are eligible."

Councillor Salma Arif, Leeds City Council’s executive member for public health, said: “We are pleased with the take up of the Covid vaccine so far in Leeds.

"For a number of months, driven by data and our Leeds Covid-19 Vaccine Health Inequalities Plan, we have been going into the heart of our communities with locally based vaccination centres and roving vaccination bus provision.

"I would urge anyone who has been offered a jab to please not delay, and book their appointment as soon as possible.

"“We know that there will be people who do have some concerns in taking the vaccine which is to be expected. I would ask anyone with any questions or concerns to please look at and use trusted sources such as the NHS website or speak to their local GP.”

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