Thousands of people in Wolverhampton have now received their first jab. The first dose should give the recipient good protection from Covid-19 after 2 or 3 weeks, but they require the second dose, given between 3 and 12 weeks later, to receive longer lasting protection.
Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "It's fantastic news that the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine is going so well in Wolverhampton – and as soon as you receive your invitation, I’d urge you to make sure you book your appointment.
"The vaccine will reduce your chances of becoming seriously ill from Covid-19 and should also reduce the risk of you catching or passing on the virus to others.
"Getting vaccinated is of course something to celebrate, but it's really important that once you've had your jab, you continue to follow the rules that are in place to stop the spread of Covid-19, to protect yourselves and others and to bring the infection rate down.
"So please remember to follow the lockdown guidance, stay home as much as possible, practice social distancing, wear a face covering and wash your hands carefully and frequently."
There are now 7 sites in Wolverhampton which are delivering the life saving jab.
They include the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust's New Cross Hospital and 6 primary care sites, each of which is linked to local GPs. These are Wood Road Surgery in Wolverhampton, Mayfield Medical Practice’s Bushbury branch, Woodcross Medical Centre, Keats Grove Surgery, Alfred Squire Road Health Centre and Whitmore Reans Health Centre. Mass vaccination sites have also opened at the Black Country Living Museum in Dudley and Millennium Point in Birmingham.
Those most at risk are being offered the vaccination first, and it will be rolled out to other groups in order of age and risk over the coming weeks and months. For details of the priority list, visit GOV.UK. The NHS will contact people when it is their turn to book their vaccine, people should not contact their GP or pharmacy.
Dr Salma Reehana, Clinical Chair, Wolverhampton Clinical Commissioning Group, added: "The rollout is well underway and our GPs are moving through the lists and will be in touch.
“Your GP practice is prioritising those most vulnerable and will be working in line with vaccine deliveries to ensure all of you will get the vaccine as soon as possible.
"If you have had a letter from the NHS, please don’t call your GP; you can either wait for your GP to contact you about getting an appointment at a local site, or use the details in the letter to book your jab at one of the larger vaccination services."
The latest information and guidance around coronavirus is available at GOV.UK and on the council’s own coronavirus pages. Further details of the lockdown restrictions currently in place, and the answers to frequently asked questions, are available at COVID Alert.
Anyone with symptoms of Covid-19, which include a fever, a new continuous cough or a change to the sense of taste or smell, must immediately self isolate and book a PCR test by visiting GOV.UK or calling 119.
Latest figures show there were 698.6 cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 people in Wolverhampton over the 7 days to 22 January. That means 1,837 people in the city tested positive for the virus in that 7 day period – though the true number of new cases will likely be considerably higher.