As The Meres vaccination centre in Grantham hits a key milestone of 250,000 COVID-19 jabs, the message remains clear this Christmas: come along and get your booster.
In response to the rapid-spreading Omicron variant of coronavirus, people in Lincolnshire are being urged to get their booster jabs before the end of the year, as per the target set by the Prime Minister to offer a third jab to every adult in England by the time 2021 ends.
Sleaford resident Andrea Odam was the person who received the 250,000th coronavirus vaccination at The Meres Vaccination Centre in Grantham, on Friday, December 17, as she came in to receive her booster.
She was awarded a bouquet of flowers by Darren Altus, operations director at K2 Healthcare, Grantham and Sleaford area primary care networks.
NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group are now encouraging others to get their booster in time for Christmas, warning that likelihood of infection will be “significantly higher” the longer you leave it.
Rebecca Neno, director of COVID and Influenza Vaccination Programmes at NHS Lincolnshire CCG, said: “Millions of people across the UK have had covid vaccinations, including 24 million who have already had a booster, and we know that side effects are rare and tend to be mild, lasting only a few days. If you get your booster now, you will start to benefit from its protection in and around the run-up to Christmas.
“But if you leave getting your booster vaccination until after Christmas, there would appear to be every likelihood that rates of covid infection, which, driven by the Omicron variant, have already broken the daily record, will be significantly higher and so the chances of catching covid will obviously be greater.”
Vaccination data in Lincolnshire shows that over 323,000 booster jabs have been administered in the county so far, and that number will only continue to rise.
Rebecca Neno added: “Our GP practices continue to shoulder a significant proportion of all of the vaccinations given across Lincolnshire, and people can still choose to wait and be called for their vaccination by their local practice. If this happens, when your GP practice contacts you please take up the offer and get vaccinated as soon as possible.
“If you decide to book online instead via the National Booking System, and you can’t get straight through to an appointment, please keep trying – there is huge demand for appointments, but we are making more available every day, so it’s always worth having another go to book if you can’t get an appointment immediately.
“Also, if you have already booked an appointment for your booster vaccination for the New Year, it’s worth seeing if you can book one sooner, either online via the National Booking System, or by calling 119. If you do this, your original appointment will automatically be cancelled once you have had your booster, so your original appointment can be used by someone else.”