Bradford Central Mosque latest mosque in Yorkshire to become vaccination centre

Bradford Central Mosque has become the latest mosque to open its doors to become a community COVID-19 vaccination centre.

It is part of an initiative between Bradford Council for Mosques and local GPs to accelerate and increase take-up of the vaccine where there may be reluctance.

The centre opened Thursday February 18 between 8.30am and 1.30pm and hopes to give positive information and reassurance about the vaccine.

Yusuf Ismail, said he was reluctant to get the vaccine at first, but it was the encouragement from his 6-year-old granddaughter that changed his mind.

It follows the likes of other mosques in the region, such as the Jamia Ghausia Centre in Sheffield and Keighley Mosque.

Zulfi Karim, the President of the Bradford Council for Mosque, said he is determined to remove ''barriers'' that may be present.

“We are busy exploring other ways of making the jab as accessible as possible for everyone. Our Mosques are used to playing several key roles in the heart of our community.''

“Just because somebody has no transport, or is shielding at home, it should not be a barrier to getting safe and effective protection against COVID-19. 

He also urged those who are invited in the community to agree to taking the vaccine.

“If you are invited to have the vaccine, say yes.''

Organisers say Bradford Central Mosque is a trusted community hub for those who may be sceptical. Credit: ITV News

Earlier this month, there were calls for more patients from black, asian and minority ethnic backgrounds to take up the offer of the coronavirus vaccine.

A GP practice in Huddersfield revealed up to forty per cent of over eighties from BAME backgrounds were turning it down.

Additonally, the Vaccine Minister, Nadim Zawahi said it is important to adopt a "hyper local approach" to tackling the problem to prevent the disease going "through those communities like wildfire." 

In Bradford, GPs have recorded videos in different languages, including Urdu and Pashto, to tackle some of the myths about the coronavirus vaccine.

Dr Safina Haque, Clinical Director of Primary Care Network 4, and a GP at the Kensington Partnership, said she was grateful for the support from mosques.

“We’re grateful to the Council of Mosques for supporting us and thank all those who have been involved in setting up the facility, alongside the staff who will be working at the mosque, to help ensure we can vaccinate as many people as possible.”

The local NHS is also providing a home vaccination service for housebound people so that they are not disadvantaged.

People will be contacted by their GP practice to book their appointment and should not turn up to the vaccination clinic without one an appointment.