Milton Keynes residents begin receiving invites to mass vaccination centre in Stevenage

    Some Milton Keynes residents have begun receiving invitations to the new mass vaccination centre being opened in Stevenage.

    The site is one of seven mass vaccine centres which are opening this month across the UK, with other sites at locations including London's Excel Centre and Manchester’s Etihad Stadium.

    Anyone aged 80 or over who lives within a 45 minute drive of the centre will be getting an invitation in the post to book an appointment.

    Nurses, doctors, physios and other NHS staff working nearby are also being jabbed at the centres, along with social care and care home workers.

    Some local Milton Keynes residents have already received their vaccine at local centre's including Milton Keynes Hospital and in Water Eaton in Bletchley, and residents can continue to use local facilities if they prefer.

    NHS Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes CCG said: "If you are over 80 and have received a letter today in Bedford, Luton, Central Bedfordshire and Milton Keynes inviting you to make an appointment for the covid vaccine at a centre outside of your area, please don’t worry."

    "This is an invite to a regional vaccination centre."

    "You can either book to go to the centre, or go to a centre closer to your home. GPs are delivering vaccinations and in the coming weeks, more local centres will open."

    "If you’d sooner have your vaccine closer to home you don’t need to do anything. Your GP a will contact you."

    Anyone who is eligible can book a slot at the Stevenage centre using the national online booking system or by phone.

    The mass vaccination centres are part of the government's plan to vaccinate 12 million people by the middle of February.

    Latest figures show almost 1.3 million people had been given their first vaccine dose as of 3rd January.

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “With covid cases at record levels and a tragic number of people losing their lives to this vicious disease, we are once again asking everyone to stay at home in order to stop its spread and protect our NHS."

    “Our plan is to vaccinate as many people as possible across the entire United Kingdom as quickly as we can. And with more than 1,000 vaccination sites across the country, including seven new mass vaccination centres, we will help protect hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people over the coming weeks as we accelerate towards offering 12 million people the jab in England by the middle of February."

    “There are deeply challenging weeks ahead, but today signals another significant step forward in the race to protect the public, and defeat the virus.”

    NHS national medical director Professor Stephen Powis said: “The coronavirus vaccination programme, the largest in NHS history, has got off to a strong start."

    “With more vaccine supplies now coming on stream we are rapidly accelerating the programme and these large scale NHS vaccination centres are an important new way for people to get the life-saving jab, alongside our GP and hospital services."

    “NHS staff are under huge pressure with big rises in coronavirus infections leaving record numbers needing hospital treatment but are still pull out all the stops to deliver Covid jabs as swiftly as we can.”

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Through our vaccine delivery plan we have already provided a first dose to more than 1.2 million people in England and we are mobilising the government, NHS and the armed forces as part of a massive national effort."

    “The vaccination centres are an important milestone and will help accelerate the rollout further."

    “They will work hand in hand with GPs, pharmacies, hospitals and care homes to offer vaccines to everyone in the top four priority cohorts, saving thousands of lives and helping us start to return to normal in the future.”

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