Prince William thanks staff at vaccine centre for 'incredible efforts'
- Credit: PA
Prince William has visited a Norfolk vaccine centre to thank staff for their "incredible efforts" during the Covid-19 vaccine rollout.
The Duke of Cambridge visited the mass coronavirus centre at the King’s Lynn Corn Exchange on Monday, February 22, to pay tribute to the work and dedication of staff" in administering Covid jabs.
The site, which opened at the start of February, is one of Norfolk's large-scale centres and has delivered thousands of vaccines to people every week since its launch.
During the visit, Prince William spoke to NHS staff and volunteers about their experiences of being involved in the largest vaccination programme in British history.
He also met and spoke with a number of people who were receiving their vaccine.
Vaccination nurse Sandra Laycock, who undertakes clinical assessments to ensure it is safe to deliver the vaccine to people, said: “The Duke was really interested in all that we were doing here to protect people and help them return to a more normal way of life in the future.”
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Immunisation nurse Margot Smith, who was drawing up the vaccines, said: “It was great to explain the vaccination process to the Duke – he was really interested in my role in the vaccination centre today and my usual role as a school immunisation nurse.“
Vaccinator Debbie Rudd added: “It was great to hear that the Duke was so positive about people having their vaccinations and he thanked us for everything we are doing to support the vaccination programme.”
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Volunteers Fliss and Stewart Davidson said it was a "great privilege" to be part of the vaccination programme.
They added: "We’ve been volunteering with the RVS since March last year and with the vaccination centres in Wisbech and King's Lynn for several weeks.
"The Duke was interested to hear how our role helps reassure people who are waiting to have their vaccine and how positive the atmosphere is at the Centre.”
Mike Passfield, clinical operations director for the trust’s large-scale vaccination centres, said it was a privilege to lead the mass vaccination centre programme on behalf of Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust.
The clinical operations director added: "I enjoyed sharing with the Duke how many organisations have collectively worked together to overcome our logistical challenges and rolled out this life saving vaccination programme.”
Matthew Winn, chief executive of Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust said they were delighted to welcome the Duke and highlighted the efforts of NHS staff and the "army of volunteers" across the local hospitals, GPs and pharmacists.
On his visit, William was also asked about the health of his grandad Prince Philip, who is in hospital, and was said to have given a reassuring wink.
He said: "Yes, he's OK, they're keeping an eye on him."
Figures published by NHS England have revealed that around 307,716 doses of the vaccination have been delivered to people living in Norfolk and Waveney for the period up to February 14, with 94pc of over 80s, 97pc of 75 to 79 year olds and 73pc of 70 to 74 year olds receiving their first dose.