Almost four in five eligible residents across Preston and Lancashire are now fully vaccinated.Advertisement
In England, 37,369,865 people have received both doses of the vaccine, according to NHS data up to Thursday, 28 September, equating to 75.4% of the eligible population.
Across the Lancashire County Council area, 78.3 per cent of residents who are eligible for two doses of a Covid vaccine have now received it.
This includes more than 6,500 children and young adults who are clinically extremely vulnerable.
Read more: The Mayor of Preston’s Covid thank you torchlight parade and fireworks
Lancashire is also ahead of the pack when it comes to first doses, with 85.4 per cent of eligible residents protected with at least one dose, compared to 82.6 per cent nationally.
This includes the thousands of 16 and 17-year-olds who have now received protection from the vaccine, with Lancashire seeing a stronger uptake than many North West areas.
County Councillor Michael Green, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, has thanked the people of Lancashire for doing their part to keep everyone safe, and has urged eligible residents who aren’t double jabbed to get fully vaccinated as soon as possible.
Cllr Green said: “The uptake of the vaccine in Lancashire has been fantastic, and it’s brilliant to see us punching above the national average. Thank you for everyone has come forward and supported this massive undertaking.
“I would like to thank the NHS staff and volunteers for their incredible efforts in delivering our vaccination programme. The vaccination programme in Lancashire has been a resounding success, particularly when compared to other vaccination programmes, but there is always more work to do.
“If you are eligible but not yet had your jab, you have not missed your chance. For those who may be hesitant, please head down to your local vaccination site and speak to staff who will be happy to discuss those with you.
“It is so important that we maintain the momentum because Covid has shown us time and time again that you cannot count it down and out. We must push on so please make don’t put it off any longer and get vaccinated so that we can keep Lancashire safe.”
Attention in Lancashire is now shifting to the booster programme, which will provide a third jab for some of the most vulnerable people in the county.
Read more: Preston residents wait an average of 10 days for GP appointments
Parents, guardians, or carers of children aged 12-15 have also started to receive letters from the NHS, with details of when their vaccination will be offered.
The NHS has confirmed that the vaccine will not be given to any child without the proper consent being in place, with consent being sought in line with existing school vaccination programmes.
All of this is action will further strengthen Lancashire’s wall of defence against Covid-19 as we head into autumn and winter.
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, Director of Public Health for Lancashire County Council, said: “Getting vaccinated is still the most effective thing you can do to protect yourself from serious illness and from other long-term illnesses, such as Long Covid.
“The decision to offer Covid-19 vaccinations to all 12-15-year-olds is also good news for the children of Lancashire. Taking this action will reduce the number of children who are suffering from Covid-19 at home, but who may not require hospital admission. Crucially, it will also help to reduce transmission in our schools, minimising the disruption to our children’s education and the lives of the families.
“It is critical that we keep our adult population protected, which is why the booster programme getting underway is so important. This will also help ease the strain on our NHS, who are still contending with Covid, and the massive backlog that has built up over the course of the pandemic.
“If you are eligible for a Covid-19 vaccine and have not had it yet, please do not hesitate any longer so you can play a vital role in keeping Lancashire safe and on the road to recovery.”
Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines
Are you double jabbed? Let us know in the comments below.