WEST Lancashire’s run of pop up and vaccine bus clinics have been hailed as a huge success by health chiefs.
NHS West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) worked with West Lancashire Borough Council and local GP Practices to provide vaccination opportunities to residents who may have had difficulties reaching the existing permanent sites.
There was a series of pop up clinics across a three-week period, starting at Ennerdale Community Centre in Skelmersdale on June 22 and concluding at the Ecumenical Centre on Friday, July 16.
Residents were able to walk-in without an appointment to receive a first or second dose of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine in community settings such as church halls and village halls, while the vaccine bus was located in other highly popular areas. In total, more than 1,000 doses of vaccine were administered across the course of the programme.
The CCG and Borough Council worked together to identify areas across the region with the lowest uptake, engaging with residents and community groups to encourage them to take up the offer of a Covid-19 vaccine to protect them and their loved ones from the virus.
The campaign also received significant support from Rosie Cooper MP and the Mayor of West Lancashire, Councillor Gordon Johnson.
Cllr Johnson attended one of the pop up clinics at Riverside Holiday Park in Banks on Thursday July 8, speaking to residents and congratulating site staff on the success of the rollout so far in West Lancashire.
The figures for West Lancashire published on Thursday July 15 showed 79,789 people (around 84 per cent of the adult population) had received a first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, with 67,134 (around 71 per cent of the adult population) also receiving an important second dose.
Emma Robinson, Covid-19 vaccination programme manager for NHS West Lancashire CCG, said: “The feedback received from the pop up and vaccine bus clinics was overwhelmingly positive.
“We have heard lots of stories from people who were unable to get to our regular sites, or simply found it convenient to pop in and get their vaccine in a community setting. As a result, more people in West Lancashire are protected against Covid-19 through receiving a first or second jab.
“It has been a true team effort. I would like to thank our Skelmersdale, Ormskirk and Northern Parish GP teams for their tireless work throughout the vaccine rollout, West Lancashire Borough Council, all other site staff and volunteers, as well as those who welcomed us into their communities and opened up their premises for use.
“The offer of a Covid-19 vaccine does not expire and it is not too late to come forward. Receiving both doses gives you longer-lasting and strengthened protection against the virus, and our vaccine team would be delighted to welcome you.”
Councillor Vickie Cummins, cabinet member for health and wellbeing added: “My sincere congratulations to everyone involved in this huge push to take vaccinations to the heart of our communities. It’s been a really successful collaboration, and everyone has done a fantastic job delivering the vaccination rollout over the last seven months.”
People in West Lancashire are still able to receive walk-in vaccinations at the permanent vaccination sites in West Lancashire at Hants Lane Clinic (Ormskirk), Birleywood Health Centre (Skelmersdale) & The Old People’s Club (Burscough). Walk-ins are also accepted at the Edge Hill University vaccination site.
These clinics are subject to availability and details will be posted via the CCG’s social media accounts as and when details of walk-ins become available.
Residents can also book a Covid-19 vaccine online via the National Booking Service (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/) or by calling 119.