Which GP surgeries in Norfolk are already giving out the Covid vaccine?
- Credit: PA
Nine GP surgeries in Norfolk and Waveney are now administering the coronavirus vaccine, with more to follow.
Although the county's three hospitals and nine surgeries all have the vaccine, analysis of NHS data shows more than 150,000 people in Norfolk and Waveney live in areas where there are no vaccinations centres.
Constituencies that have no vaccination services currently include North Norfolk and Norwich North, where there are populations of 87,596 and 90,083 respectively, although those in line for a vaccine in the city face only a short drive to one of three nearby centres.
But for people living in Cromer, for example, the nearest vaccination location is Fakenham.
The nine GP surgeries are Cringleford Surgery, Fakenham Medical Practice, Falkland Surgery (Great Yarmouth), Kirkley Mill (Lowestoft), Lionwood Medical Practice (Norwich), St James Medical Practice (King's Lynn), Swanton Morley Surgery, Terrington St Johns Surgery and Thetford Healthy Living Centre.
The NHS has said more vaccination locations will open this month to administer the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine which began today.
In Suffolk, the NHS said 10,000 people had been vaccinated, but Norfolk and Waveney NHS said it wasn't able to provide exact figures.
A spokesperson for Norfolk and Waveney CCG said: “Rapid progress has been made across Norfolk and Waveney to vaccinate eligible patients; numbers continue to increase in line with vaccine supply.”
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Last week the CCG warned people to wait for their GPs to get in touch before trying to get a vaccine.
The reminder came after a number of people arrived at the James Paget University Hospital in Great Yarmouth on December 28 having read on Facebook that you could turn up and get a vaccine without an appointment.
The hospital's director of nursing Paul Morris said: “It is really important to stress that vaccinations are being given by appointment only.
“The NHS will contact you when it is your turn – we’d ask that people please wait to be given an appointment. If you don’t have an appointment, we won’t be able to vaccinate you."
On Sunday more than 50,000 new cases were recorded nationally for the sixth day running, with a fast vaccine roll out seen as the only way to get life back to normal.
What vaccinations are available?
Two vaccines have been approved for use in the UK. Both require two jabs, though the government is focussing on making sure as many people as possible get at least one.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was the first to be approved, and more than a million people have already had their first jab.
Monday is the first day of the roll out of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. Six hospital trusts - in Oxford, London, Sussex, Lancashire and Warwickshire - are set to administer the new jab, with 530,000 doses ready for use.
More doses will be sent to hundreds of GP-led vaccination services and care homes across the UK later in the week, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.
More than 100 million doses have been secured by the UK – enough to vaccinate most of the population.
The Department of Health has previously said residents in care homes and their carers will get the vaccine first, followed by people aged 80 or over and front line health and social care workers.
The rest of the population will be vaccinated according to age, though people with underlying health conditions will be higher up the list than others in their age cohort.
Concerns have been raised over how central government has communicated the vaccine roll out to NHS trusts, CCGs and the public.
Chief of Norfolk and Waveney Healthwatch Alex Stewart said while NHS trusts and CCGs were doing their utmost to roll out the programme, they were being hampered by mixed messages from central government.
“We’re leaping from one scenario to another from day to day, and I don’t think that helps public confidence,” he said.
“One the one hand people were told two doses within 21 days, now that has changed to vaccinate as many people as possible at least once.
“I understand why the change has been made, to vaccinate as many people as possible, but from a Healthwatch perspective that hasn’t been communicated very well at all. We are aware anecdotally of people’s concerns.”