More than 5,000 people in Powys have received the first Covid-19 vaccination and nearly half of all care home residents.
A vaccination centre in Newtown, run by health staff and supported by volunteers, has been one of three such centres in the county.
Some local GP surgeries in the area are expected to begin vaccinations soon, with surgeries such as Montgomery already declaring an interest in participating.
“Nearly 3000 invitations have already been sent to people aged 80 and over in the county, inviting them to book an appointment at our mass vaccination centres in Newtown, Builth Wells and Bronllys,” said a Powys Teaching Health Board statement on Sunday.
“This represents around a third of our 80+ residents, and everyone aged 80 and over will receive their invitation during January.”
It added: “Alongside this, great progress has been made on vaccination for residents of care homes for older adults. At the time of writing, nearly half of our care home residents have received their first dose vaccination. Nearly all will have received this by the end of next week.
“Our mass vaccination centres are set to be joined this month by GP practice-led vaccination clinics across the county. The first of these opens next week in Presteigne, with clinics set to follow across Powys. This will increase access and availability for people for residents.”
Vaccination is by appointment only, following the guidance on priorities set by the UK’s independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). This means that vaccination is currently under way for the JCVI’s top priority groups:
Care home residents
People aged 80 and over
Health and care workers – to help protect the vulnerable people in their care, who are most at risk of catching coronavirus and developing serious illnesses
Following this, vaccination will begin for people in the next priority groups.
The next priority group is people 75 years of age and older, followed by each of these groups in turn:
People 70 years of age and older, and people who are clinically extremely vulnerable (also known as the “shielding” group) – people in this group will previously have received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer advising them to shield
People 65 years of age and older
People aged 16 to 64 with underlying health conditions, which puts them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
People 60 years of age and older
People 55 years of age and older
People 50 years of age and older
The statement said: “Soon we will be able to confirm the timetable for invitations to the next priority groups. But this week our focus has understandably been our invitations to the most vulnerable people – the over 80s and care home residents – and putting in place our plan for ramping up our capacity even further in the coming weeks.”
The key messages for everyone are:
Everyone in Powys aged 80 and over is being invited for vaccination in January.
Vaccination of care home residents is also well under way.
Following this, invitations will be sent to people in the next priority groups.
Please wait to be contacted, and thank you for your patience.
You will receive your invitation when you are due for your appointment, based on the priority order across the UK).
Please don’t contact your GP, pharmacy, health board, hospital or local authority about an appointment.
Good progress is being made in Powys – we currently have the highest levels of vaccination per head in Wales – and we will all see the vaccination programme continue to expand during January and beyond.