Vaccination update – 13 April 2021

The vaccine rollout has continued at pace, locally and nationally. The centres in Harrogate and Knaresborough have been really busy.

Over 3 in 5 adults have now had a jab. That is ahead of almost every other country, so a huge well done and thank you to the vaccine teams as they head to the second phase of the rollout. The focus has now shifted to second doses.  

The latest data on doses administered in England shows a total of 33.3million, split 27.1m first doses, 6.2m second doses. Breaking down the total by vaccine, 42 per cent have been doses of the Pfizer vaccine and 58 per cent doses of the Oxford AstraZeneca.

The NHS has confirmed that whichever type of first jab you received, you will receive the same for your second dose.

The first use of the Moderna vaccine in England will be on Tuesday 13 April. There will be limited availability of it during April, but supplies ramp up in May. That takes the available vaccines to three, with further vaccines anticipated becoming available over the weeks ahead.

There has been much national publicity on questions of vaccine safety. Public Health England announced last Friday that their analysis of the programme during the period from the 8th December to the end of March revealed that over 10,400 lives had been saved. What a phenomenal result.

The advice from the NHS is to go and receive your jab whenever you are called forward. I was called forward by my GP surgery when my age group became eligible and went to the Showground for my jab. I had the Oxford AstraZeneca jab and was really impressed by the organisation of the centre.

The medical safety regulators here and in Europe have approved the Oxford AstraZeneca for all age groups, but the range of vaccines available give the NHS choice and flexibility. Take up rates are very high nationally and locally, with no increase in the non-attendance rates, though the NHS reports GPs are receiving more questions.

The vaccines have broken the link between case numbers and hospitalisations and mortality, that have previously gone in parallel. People are still getting sick, however, so discipline is required whilst the vaccine rollout continues. But as we continue with the lockdown release timetable it is clear that there are brighter days ahead.