Vic 'rattling through' 1,000 Covid vaccines a week - with half resort's care home residents given first jab

Around 1,000 Covid vaccines are being given at Blackpool Victoria Hospital every week, while half of the resort's care home residents have had their first jab.

Thursday, 21st January 2021, 1:51 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st January 2021, 1:54 pm
Blackpool Victoria Hospital

But the Whinney Hey Road hospital's medical director, Dr Jim Gardner, urged people to be patient and wait their turn, saying they would be sent an appointment from their GP.

"Within the hospital we have given over 7,000 now of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, and colleagues in general practice and in pharmacies are ratcheting up their programmes," he said.

"I need to keep saying, 'You need to wait for something from your surgery to be called up onto the appropriate list.'

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Medical director Dr Jim Gardner

"They are working down the at-risk lists as we speak.

"We are now rattling through NHS staff, having done a lot of people in the over-80s group and staff from care homes.

"I'm pleased to see our community teams have immunised all residents in care homes - over 50 per cent of those have been done now - so they are really working through the residential homes and we are looking to complete that work in the very near future.

"And then looking forward, we expect to see a big site opening at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool to really ratchet up the mass immunisation programme."

The Vic is a designated Pfizer hub and has been kitted out with the kit needed to keep the vaccine frozen until it is administered.

Two super vaccination centres are due to open on the Fylde coast on Monday, The Gazette revealed this morning.

The Winter Gardens, in Church Street, and AFC Fylde both offered up their facilities to support the fight against the coronavirus.

Yet national health chiefs - and the Government - failed to release details as yet more time is lost in the race to stop the spread of the virus.

The Gazette wrote how many elderly patients have been left in the dark as they wait for details of appointments and, despite more than 80,000 people backing our 'Shot in the Arm' campaign, calling on all pharmacies to be given the chance to offer the jab and turbocharge the vaccination roll-out, we are still waiting.

As local leaders hailed the involvement of local businesses, health bosses remained silent. Requests for more details around the two sites were ignored.

It comes as the number of patients in hospitals on the Fylde coast continues to rise.

Dr Gardner said 169 people within 14 days of a positive test were in hospital yesterday, up from 152 last week and 135 two weeks ago.

While the community infection rate remained "broadly flat" compared to last week it is still "high", he added.

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