The Mayor and Mayoress of Wirral have paid tribute to NHS staff and volunteers after receiving their COVID-19 vaccinations.
After waiting their turn to be called by the NHS, Councillor Tony Smith and Mayoress Barbara Smith, attended the vaccination centre at Woodchurch Leisure Centre.
The Mayor or Wirral, Councillor Tony Smith, said:
“I am so grateful to all the wonderful staff and volunteers who guided us through the process and administered the vaccine; it really was efficient and friendly and is a great testament to the incredible teamwork by the NHS, volunteer marshals and Wirral Council.
“Like many people, I have been looking forward to this important day and had no hesitation accepting my appointment. The vaccine is the best way to save lives and it has been through lots of testing and is safe. I feel good knowing I have played my part in helping to beat this dreadful virus.
“And while I appreciate it will give me a high level of protection, I will be sure to follow the nurse’s advice to keep following the guidance, including those important hands-face-space, rules.”
The Mayor and Mayoress received their first jabs as the vaccination programme in Wirral continues to roll out in line with national guidance and is on track to offer vaccinations to all people in groups 1 to 4 by the government’s target of 15 February 2021.
The borough’s seven vaccination sites (at Clatterbridge Hospital, Victoria Central Hospital, St Catherine’s Health Centre, Birkenhead Medical Building, Woodchurch Leisure Centre, The Oval Leisure Centre and Moreton Cross Group Practice) are currently vaccinating people in groups 1 to 4, which includes care home residents and staff, people who are clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV), frontline health and care staff and all those aged 70 and over.
As these groups will take time to work through, residents are being asked not to contact their GP practice about their vaccination date and are instead being urged to be patient and wait to be contacted by the NHS when it is their turn to have the vaccine.
Dr Paula Cowan, local GP and Chair of NHS Wirral Clinical Commissioning Group, said:
“NHS staff in Wirral are doing an incredible job to offer the first crucial dose of the vaccine to everyone in the top priority groups by the middle of February, at the same time as continuing to be there for everyone who needs care. You may not yet have been invited but please don’t be worried if you or a family member is aged 70 or over and hasn’t heard anything so far, the NHS will contact you when it’s your turn to have the vaccine.
“People who are eligible and who haven’t already been vaccinated by their local GP led service might also receive a letter from the national NHS COVID-19 Vaccination Booking Service, giving them the option of booking an appointment at a mass vaccination centre. If it’s not convenient, you can choose not to attend an appointment at one of these sites and instead wait until you receive your local invitation letter and have your vaccine from your local GP-led service, closer to home.
“We all have an important part to play by continuing to follow the guidance to control the virus and save lives – that means staying at home as much as possible and following the ‘hands, face, space’ guidance when you are out."