How have NHS chief's concerns affected Covid jab uptake in young people?

Covid vaccination

NHS's new chief executive is concerned around the increase in Covid admissions of patients aged 18 to 34 and urged them to get their jab. - Credit: Getty Images

Three quarters of young people in Norfolk and Waveney have had their first vaccine amid concerns of rising Covid admissions in those aged 18 to 34. 

NHS England's new chief executive Amanda Pritchard said around 1,000 young adults between 18 to 34 are currently "really unwell" in hospital. 

A spokesperson for the NHS in Norfolk and Waveney, said more young people without a vaccination were being seen with Covid symptoms compared to the first and second wave.

The spokesman added: "While these numbers are small by comparison, the numbers are rising, so it is extremely important that everyone takes up the offer of a vaccine.”

In Norfolk, more than three quarters of 18 to 34 year olds have had at least one dose, though broken down by authority this ranged from 58.6pc up to 81.3pc. 

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The government began offering Covid vaccinations to all over 18s from June 18. 

As of August 1, a further 23,623 jabs took place in Norfolk, of which 2,989 were first doses, and 20,634 were second across all age groups.

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This means 90.4pc of adults living in Norfolk and Waveney have had one dose, and more than three quarters have received both vaccinations. 

Across Norfolk's seven authorities, first dose percentages for the 18 to 24 group was higher across the seven areas in comparison to those aged 25 to 29. 

Izzy Whiting, is co-chair of Broadland Youth Advisory Board, said she was impressed and reassured by the numbers who have taken up their vaccine, but said it was not surprising admissions were rising as society opened up. 

She said: "I have had my first vaccine and have my second booked in. The figures are really great, I do not think we have been able to have it [vaccines] for that long and that is quite impressive. 

"I'm really reassured as a young person all of my friends have had their first jab. It was pretty easy, 10 to 15 minutes getting my jab and the wait after, it was really quick and really well organised. 

"I'm going to university in September, and it is really reassuring I'm going to be surrounded by people my own age having their vaccine. I know a lot of people who have got their 2nd vaccination booked before they go to university. 

The 18-year-old said incentive schemes to encourage young people to get their vaccine were nice but not necessary. 

She said: "In some ways, I'm not sure how necessary it is. It is a bit based on stereotypes that young people do not want to get it. 

"For some people, it is not wanting an incentive, it is about wanting the right information and having that information more readily available."

In Norwich, 67.7pc of people aged 18 to 24 have had their first jab, with 58.6pc of 25 to 29-year-olds - the lowest in the county. 

In Broadland, 79.1pc of 18 to 24s, 77.6pc of 25 to 29s and 81.3pc of 30 to 34-year-olds have had their first jab - the highest in Norfolk.

During the second wave, the number of patients over the age of 65 hosptialised for Covid reached 90 on January 13, of which 52 were aged between 65 and 84. 

The largest number of people aged 18 to 64 was 32 on January 21. 

At a board meeting on Wednesday, it was revealed the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital is now caring for between 15 to 20 patients, ranging from 10 years old to 88.

Those aged 16 and 17 will soon be invited for their jab following a government announcement on Wednesday.

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