WITH thanks to the amazing efforts of vaccination teams and GP practices across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire, we can confirm that Hywel Dda UHB has met the first Welsh Government vaccination milestone of offering a first dose to everyone in groups 1 to 4 by Monday 15 February.
Locally recorded figures confirm that at 10am today, Monday 15 February, 101,938 vaccines have been administered – that’s 92% of local people in the first 4 priority groups. With many GP practices and the Health Board’s Mass Vaccination Centres working hard over the weekend it is likely that there is still more data yet to be added but even without this, the local NHS has risen to the challenge to protect its most vulnerable people in record time.
The health board’s focus now turns to the next stage of its vaccination programme as we move on to the next priority groups while also providing second doses to those who received their first dose in December.
Steve Moore, Chief Executive of Hywel Dda UHB, said, “This vaccination programme offers a real solution in the fight against COVID-19 and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has played their part in this achievement.
“I’d also like to thank our community in groups priority groups 1 to 4 who have come forward in large numbers to receive their vaccine. At the start of this programme we viewed success would mean 75% of each group receiving a vaccine.
“We have surpassed this in all four groups and this puts our three counties in a very strong position to protect the most vulnerable in our communities and our local NHS.
“We hope to see this high uptake continue as we move to vaccinate groups 5 to 9 by spring and to the rest of our adult population through the summer. Thank you.”
Over the next few weeks, there will be a temporary reduction in the use of mass vaccination centres across the three counties in order to manage the logistics of delivering second doses in sequence at the vaccination centre where the first dose was received and also due to a slight reduction in the amount of vaccines being received.
Please be assured this is a planned and expected change in supply that will affect the whole of the UK. This has been factored this into our planning and it will not affect people’s appointments or delay when people are due to get their second dose. The supply of vaccines is expected to ramp up significantly from the beginning of March.
People aged 65 to 69 (priority group 5) will start to be contacted by their GP practice over the next couple of weeks to receive their vaccine and further announcements as to how people in group 6 will be invited will be made as soon as possible.
We understand people are anxious and want to know when they can have the vaccine. Please do not contact your GP, pharmacy or health board; you will be contacted when it is your turn. People will be invited to receive the vaccine in order of priority, so please be patient.
As more of our community start to receive a vaccine, people are reminded they must continue to follow current advice and guidance with regards to social distancing and wearing face coverings.
The vaccine will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill. We do not yet know yet whether it will stop you from catching and passing on the virus.
For more information about the vaccine and the Hywel Dda vaccination programme, please visit https://hduhb.nhs.wales/COVID19-Vaccination