Vaccine team celebrates 50,000 jabs
Staff and volunteers with the Downend-based vaccination team celebrate at Christ Church
A DOWNEND-based Covid-19 vaccination centre has celebrated delivering its 50,000th jab to members of the community.
The team based at Christchurch Family Medical Centre is managed by the Network 4 Primary Care Network, including Downend Health Group (Christchurch and Willow surgeries), Green Valleys Health (Leap Valley and Emersons Green), Three Shires Medical Practice, which includes Pucklechurch, and Orchard Medical Centre in Kingswood.
The vaccination centre in the former Boots pharmacy next to Christchurch Family Medical Centre on North Street has been operating constantly since the first delivery of Pfizer vaccine last December and delivered its 50,000th jab in August.
Most vaccinations have been provided in the centre, although a small number have been administered in care homes and at the homes of patients unable to go out.
GP based centres, which contact patients to offer a jab, have been operating in tandem with the mass vaccination centres which have been giving jabs to people booking via the NHS website.
Some 86% of the primary care network (PCN)’s patients have received one dose and 77% have received two doses of vaccine.
For the over-50s the percentages are 94% and 92% respectively and for the over-80s and care home residents, 99% and 98%.
The centre recently started to vaccinate 16 and 17-year-old patients of local surgeries and will continue to operate at North Street to offer booster doses and some flu vaccinations to eligible patients throughout the autumn.
Initially made up of nurses, doctors, managers and admin staff from the surgeries, the vaccination centre has since recruited a large number of new staff and volunteers, including many who have come out of retirement to help with the vaccination effort.
More than 8,000 hours in total have been worked by staff and volunteers in the centre since it opened.
To celebrate the milestone the PCN held a celebratory event in August to say thank you to all of those involved, with food and drink from the Staple Hill-based Los Hermanos food truck and a specially-made cake from Piece of Cake bakery in North Street.
Network 4 PCN clinical director Richard Berkley said: "I have been amazed and humbled by the sheer generosity of people giving up their time to achieve this momentous task.
"Vaccination remains the cornerstone to us getting our lives back.
"All our health services are under such pressure at the moment, yet people still manage to give even more.
"I am so grateful to them all. We have also learned how working together in a group of surgeries can help, and we hope to continue to join forces together and bring new services like this in the future."