Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust has began administering the Covid-19 vaccine to its health workers ahead of a Trust-wide rollout next week.
The Trust’s vaccination programme begins on Monday 11 January. Appointments are being prioritised for the organisation’s most vulnerable staff.
It's hoped the roll-out of the immunisation plan will prevent the pandemic from having an impact on other essential services.
Today, CNTW has vaccinated 100 health workers who will go on to give the jab to other staff and patients over the coming weeks and months.
Vaccinations will be taking place at St Nicholas Hospital in Gosforth, with plans to extend to other sites within the Trust shortly.
John Lawlor OBE, chief executive at CNTW, has thanked those involved in the implementation of the programme: “This is an important moment in our collective fight against Covid-19 and I’m extremely proud of what we have been able to achieve in such a challenging time.
While the vaccine is, of course, welcome news, it’s important to remember that the virus is still out there. We urge everyone to ensure they are still following the guidance; wash your hands, wear a mask or face covering, and keep your distance.
John Lawlor continued: “The safety and wellbeing of our staff and patients will always remain at the heart of what we do. Some of our patients are the most vulnerable in society and we have a duty to protect them. We know there has been a lot of excitement around the vaccine and we ask our staff to be patient. We will contact you to arrange your appointment. I have every confidence in our programme and hope it will be the start of us getting back to some form of normality.”
Justine Brennan-Tovey put her name forward to become one of the health workers that would immunise others. She says it is her duty.
When I knew the Trust were looking for vaccinators, I knew I wanted to help. I feel it’s my duty to help and protect others so we are in with a chance of beating the virus.
Meanwhile, thousands of people are being vaccinated across the region by primary care networks. NHS teams have been working hard to deliver the Pfizer vaccine in hundreds of hospital hubs, local GP-led services and care homes.
Staff from CNTW’s Cumbria output are receiving vaccinations from North Cumbria Integrated Care (NCIC) to allow less travel time and to make the process as easy as possible for staff.
Plans are also being put in to place to commence the vaccinations of patients within the Trust.