As we draw closer to the 19th July, the date set for easing covid restrictions currently in place, people across Lincolnshire who have not yet received a covid vaccination are being urged to come forwards quickly and get vaccinated, since the next two weeks are crucial in the race against the virus, to ensure enough of us have been vaccinated and to keep us all safe.
In particular, the NHS in the county is keen that people aged 18 and over do not delay coming forwards for their vaccinations, as Rebecca Neno, Deputy Chief Nurse, NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group, explains.
“We’ve now given a total of approximately 546,000 first doses, and 436,000 people in Lincolnshire have received both doses, which is phenomenal but it’s still not enough. To ensure our population is as safe as possible as restrictions are released, we need to ensure that 85% of all those eligible have received a first dose. Our current position is 83.4%, which means we have some way to go yet to achieve this target, particularly in the under 30 age groups.
“The whole point in having the covid vaccination is to protect others – your family and friends, your loved ones – as well as yourself, so that we can return to some normality and keep that normality. The virus will continue to target those who are not yet vaccinated or choose not to have the vaccination, and this will result in its ongoing spread in our communities. Reaching 85% of vaccination uptake across all age groups will give us the best certainty of maintaining the new normal moving forwards.”
With two Mass Vaccination Centres at PRSA, Boston, and at the Lincolnshire Showground, as well as a number of Local Vaccination Centres, Lincolnshire has the infrastructure and the vaccine supply to vaccinate enough people to hit 85% and more, but the entire rollout programme is dependent on people coming forwards for their vaccination.
“I know there are various reasons why people of any age, but particularly younger people, might be reluctant to get vaccinated, but as a nurse myself I cannot emphasise enough how important it is to have your covid vaccination, not least because it’s the best way to get the maximum protection against covid. If you are still unsure please book an appointment or walk in to one of our vaccination centres and discuss your concerns – our staff will help you understand the risks and benefits, and allow you to make an informed decision about the vaccination.
“Thousands of my colleagues across the county have put their lives on hold – and sometimes at risk – to give all of us the best possible opportunity to get vaccinated. We are now asking anyone who hasn’t yet come forwards for their vaccination to do so and play their part by getting vaccinated, just as their parents, grandparents, friends and family have already done in huge numbers,” adds Rebecca.
All of the various vaccines currently being used are highly effective against covid, including its variants, and a recent study showed they have reduced hospital attendances by 94%.
“With the ongoing dominance of the Delta variant, getting vaccinated twice is vital as it offers the best protection. You don’t need to be registered with a GP or have an NHS number to get a vaccination, and you can either turn up to one of our Mass Vaccination Centres as a walk-in, or book in via the national booking system Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines – NHS (www.nhs.uk),” concludes Rebecca.