The first wave of the COVID-19 vaccines have started being rolled out in Havering to the most elderly and vulnerable residents.
Council Leader Damian White went along to one of the two vaccine hubs in Havering yesterday to see how the vaccine was being delivered and to meet some of the first people to receive it.
The vaccine has been made available to people over the age of 80 so far who are being contacted by the NHS and given an appointment to visit a hub, as the vaccine is currently only available by GP referral. No walks in are allowed.
Alice (81) and John (83) from Harold Park were among the first to receive the vaccine.
“I got the call from our GP on Monday. I couldn’t believe it. It will help me to get out as we’ve been isolating throughout. I just want to feel safe again.”
Once injected, residents are placed in an observation area to check for any initial reaction, before they are able to leave.
They will be invited to return for a second dose of the vaccine in January.
Councillor White said:
“It was good to see the enthusiastic take up of the vaccine and that residents were taking up their appointments so that they can protect themselves and their families from the risk of the virus.
“We hope that more deliveries of the vaccine will be made in the new year so that we can continue to get more people vaccinated and ultimately reduce the rate of the infection in the borough.
“Even though this is great news, the virus hasn’t gone away and we don’t want people to become complacent. We still want everyone to continue to practice “hands, face, space” and take all the necessary precautions.”
A vaccine hub at Queen’s Hospital, is catering for care workers and NHS workers.