GP services reach half a million first dose vaccinations

25 March 2021

More than half a million people have now been vaccinated by a GP-led service in Kent and Medway.

The milestone figure, together with vaccines given from 10 pharmacy services and five large vaccination centres, brings the total Covid-19 vaccinations for the area to 865,741.

Dr Navin Kumta, Clinical Chair for NHS Kent and Medway Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “This is a fantastic achievement and a testament to the hard work from all the staff involved.  The vaccination programme - the largest in history - continues to make good progress and more people will be eligible for a jab in the coming weeks.”

GP practices are organised into primary care networks (PCNs) and 39 of these networks are delivering vaccinations for eligible patients through a local vaccination site. These services will contact patients to book appointments.

Dr Sati Lall, from Medway South PCN, said practice staff were proud to be part of the programme. She said: “Medway South, Rochester and Strood PCNs have been working together since January to deliver vaccines to our patients across two centres.  We have vaccinated over 27,000 patients and can vaccinate up to 1,600 people in a day across both sites.

“We have been supported by amazing practice teams and are extremely grateful to our volunteers who are all very much part of the team.  We have also continued to provide normal GP services to our patients while running these vaccination clinics.

“We have adapted our clinics to patients that require reasonable adjustments, supported by a fantastic learning disability nurse from KCHFT. Additionally staff morale and feedback has been extremely high.  We are very proud to be contributing to history in the making.”

Dr Alison Milroy, from The Ridge PCN, which looks after patients from Headcorn, Sutton Valence, Langley, Lenham and Bearsted GP practices in Maidstone, said: “We are absolutely delighted that this wonderful milestone has been reached. It has been a Herculean effort on the part of everyone involved in the Covid-19 vaccination programme, and we are so proud of all our staff for the dedication they have shown.

“We are particularly proud of the time and effort that has been contributed by all of our volunteers. We couldn’t have vaccinated 91 per cent of our patients from cohorts one to nine at this point without all of our dedicated volunteer vaccinators, marshals, nurses, and doctors who work tirelessly and in their own time to ensure that all of our patients have the opportunity to receive the vaccine. It’s so important that people attend their Covid-19 vaccination appointment.”

Dr Kumta reminded everyone about the importance of continuing to follow Covid-19 guidelines once vaccinated, adding: “Early signs suggest the success of the programme is contributing to a welcome fall in infections and hospital cases but it’s not over yet and we need people to help by following government guidance. Even after you've been vaccinated, it is important to continue following all the current rules on social distancing. If for any reason you cannot attend a booked appointment, please cancel it so someone else can use the slot.”

Pharmacies and the large centres are booked online, via the national booking system. Currently anyone over the age of 50 can use this. More details about services in Kent and Medway are on the CCG’s website.


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