Following on from the good news last week that 16 and 17 year olds can now get their covid vaccination, the NHS in Lincolnshire is also keen to also remind people aged 39 and under that they too need to get vaccinated.
This is in light of increasing incidences of previously healthy young people experiencing long covid, as well as figures that show just over 50,000 people across cohorts 11 (30-39s) and 12 (18-29) in Lincolnshire are yet to be vaccinated (as of 23 August).
“Already we are seeing good numbers of 16 and 17 year-olds come for their vaccination, which is great and I would strongly anyone in this age group to come forwards as quickly as possible,” comments Rebecca Neno, Director of Covid and Influenza Vaccination Programmes at NHS Lincolnshire CCG. “However, what is concerning is the numbers of people aged 39 and under who have yet to receive a single vaccination.
“In cohort 11, which is people aged 30-39, 69% have had their first dose, which leaves 22,673 people who have not, and in cohort 12, which is people aged 18-29, 69.7% have had a first dose leaving 27,905 who have not. Whilst it is pleasing that over two thirds of people in both these cohorts have had at least one vaccination, clearly this leaves a lot of people who have not and who therefore have little or no protection against covid.”
“Aside from the more obvious risks of not being vaccinated, which I think we are all aware of now, it is worrying that increasing numbers of younger people are experiencing long covid and its debilitating effects because they have not been vaccinated. We know that people aged 16 to 29 are most likely to develop long covid and this happens to be the age range where vaccine uptake tends to be lower than average, both in Lincolnshire and across the country.
“Sadly some of these young and previously healthy people are being admitted to hospital, but we know that two doses of the vaccination roughly halves the risk of experiencing symptoms that last more than 28 days after infection. This is why we continue to ask people to come forwards, particularly those aged 39 and under, to get vaccinated twice as quickly as possible. It is quite simply the best way of protecting yourself and those you care for,” adds Rebecca.
Lincolnshire continues to offer a range of vaccination sites across the county, including options for people who are eligible (i.e. 16 and over) to attend as a walk-in, meaning no appointment is necessary, including at its two Mass Vaccination Centres at the Lincolnshire Showground and at PRSA, Boston. Find out more about our walk-in opportunities in Lincolnshire.
“Anyone who presents for their covid vaccination aged under 40 will be given Pfizer (unless they have previously received a first dose of Astra Zeneca). In addition to the two Mass Vaccination Centres, we also have a number of other vaccination sites around the county who are continuing to give the covid vaccination,” adds Rebecca.
People aged 18 or over, or who are within three months of their 18th birthday, can book online or by calling 119. People aged 16 and 17 cannot book online or via 119, but can either attend as a walk-in or wait to be contacted by the NHS to have their vaccination at a site more local to them.