A fifth Large Vaccination Centre for the region will open at Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium on Monday 22nd March 2021 adding even more capacity to help the NHS vaccinate as many people as possible as quickly as possible.
Take-up of the vaccine has been strong; nine out of 10 people aged 65 and over have already taken up their first dose.
Already the NHS in the region has vaccinated over one million people, with all people aged over 80 now vaccinated, nine out of ten older care home residents, large numbers of front line staff, people over 65 as well as adults with long term health conditions all receiving their first vaccine.
A significant proportion of vaccination has been carried out by local vaccination services run by local GP practices working in primary care networks, alongside hospitals hubs, community pharmacy and community health services.
There are over 90 local vaccination sites across the region with the NHS working closely with local authorities and other partners to provide vaccination to the priority groups.
Now a fifth Large Vaccination Centre for the region in Middlesbrough joins the four Large Vaccination Centres which are at Newcastle’s Centre for Life, the NHS Nightingale Hospital North East, Sunderland, the Arnison Centre, Durham and Darlington Arena.
These large centres complement local GP led vaccination services along with other large centres that will open in other parts of the region in the coming weeks.
The Middlesbrough Vaccination site will be known as the Riverside Stadium Vaccination Centre the map postcode is TS3 6RS.
The Riverside Stadium was chosen with local partners for its accessible location and transport links.
Large Vaccination Centres see up to 1000 patients a day, running 12 hours a day, seven days a week.
People are invited to attend Large Vaccination Centres by the National Booking Service run by NHS England. People receive a letter and are invited to book either on-line or by calling 119 free of charge between 7am and 11pm – only people invited to book can do so.
It’s important to note that Large Vaccination Centres offer an alternative choice for people to local GP vaccination services. People may wish to wait a little while until they receive an invitation from their own GP practice as this is likely to be closer to where they live and might be more convenient depending on individual circumstances.
This large vaccination centre compliments the work that is going on through Central and Greater Middlesbrough Primary Care Networks, which are groups of GP practices working together and are running two sites in the town.
People receiving letters from the NHS national booking system, will be asked to log onto the system or call 119 to book an appointment. This will show appointments at the Riverside Stadium and community pharmacy, but not for primary care.
The Riverside Stadium Vaccination Centre will be run by clinical staff, people who have been trained to become vaccinators, administrative staff and a range of volunteers all who make sure the service operates as smoothly and safely as possible.
In line with the process already in place for all other vaccination services, the NHS will contact people when it is their turn to book their vaccine.
Professor Neil Watson, Chief Operating Officer for the NHS Covid Vaccination Programme for the North East and North Cumbria, said: “Already the NHS across our region has done and continues to do an amazing job getting as many people as possible vaccinated, as quickly as possible.”
“I’d like to pay tribute to every single person who is playing a part – the work you have done has been phenomenal and without you nearly a million people across our region would not have been vaccinated.”
“Opening up the fifth vaccination centre in the region helps us to reach even more people as the programme continues to expand, giving even more people the opportunity to have their vaccine.”
“We are constantly delighted by how much people want to help us with the vaccination efforts, in particular our grateful thanks to staff in the local authorities, public transport providers, local police, and of course our ever-growing army of volunteers and staff.
We know it’s the way we can all have hope that we can all get back to normal and see the end of this awful situation.”
The NHS is prioritising vaccinating those who experts have agreed will benefit from having it the most.
It’s 100 days since the NHS gave the first Covid jab outside the clinical trials. NHS England are now inviting everyone aged 50 and over to have their vaccination. This will be either by letter or through a text alert from the National Booking Service.
Local GP vaccination services are focusing initially on the clinically vulnerable from cohort 6 ( those aged 16 to 64) because of the relationship between general practice and those with long term conditions, and continuity of care.
Prof Watson continued: “We know people are very keen to have their vaccine but remember it might be more convenient to wait for your local vaccination service run by GPs to get in touch. People should not be worried, there is enough vaccine supply to make sure that everyone who wants to have a vaccination can do so.”
People who receive a NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Booking Service invite and prefer to attend their local GP vaccination service or who have already received the jab they do not need to respond to their National Booking Service invitation.
It will not be possible to use the NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Booking Service if you haven’t received an invitation letter. Doing so risks someone who has not been able to get through and book their appointment.
It will also not be possible to get a vaccine at a Vaccination Centre or Community Pharmacy without an appointment. Doing so risks disrupting the work of NHS staff in protecting those at highest risk.
South Tees Joint Director of Public Health Mark Adams said: “The opening of the Riverside site is another step in the direction of normality. Thousands of people from around Middlesbrough and Redcar and Cleveland will get their vaccines in a location lots of them know and love. I’m grateful to the football club for their support. The centre builds on the excellent work by the primary care networks and South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
“The Covid-19 vaccine is helping to reduce rates of serious illness and save lives, which is why it’s vital everyone who is invited for a vaccine comes forward.”
“Please remember that once you’ve received your vaccine it will take three weeks for your body to build up protection. It’s vital to continue following national guidelines even after your jab to protect those around you. These include social distancing, practising good hand and respiratory hygiene and wearing a face covering when required.”
Middlesbrough FC manager Neil Warnock said: “I’m proud of the football club being able to do this at the Riverside. To have our home stadium as a Vaccination Centre and to be able to work with the NHS and the local community on this is terrific.
“The pandemic has been very hard for a lot of people and anything at all that contributes in the fight against this has my full support. I’m pleased and proud that we can play a part in some way, particularly for the people of our area.
“I’ve had the vaccine, and I’d urge everyone to follow suit as soon as they get the opportunity, because the quicker everyone is able to get it, the quicker we can hopefully start to move on and get back to life as we know it.”
For those booking a slot and coming along to The Riverside on Monday 22nd March
Attendees will have a non-evasive temperature check prior to entry into the car park. Please also complete a visitor health questionnaire (attached) on entry. You can complete this prior to your visit and hand in at reception.
Visitors must report to Middlesbrough Football Club main reception and ask for the NHS communications team.
Riverside Stadium Vaccination Centre, Darlington Arena Vaccination Centre, Arnison Vaccination Centre in Durham, NHS Nightingale Hospital North East and Newcastle’s International Centre for Life are the five large vaccination centres for the North East and North Cumbria, others will open over the coming weeks.
Newcastle Upon Tyne NHS Hospitals Trust is helping to coordinate the successful roll out of vaccination services across the North East and North Cumbria. This involves hospitals, GP practices, community health services across the region, working closely with local authorities and other partners.
Further operational information about attending Riverside Stadium Large Vaccination Centre
The car park at Riverside Stadium is used for all vaccination centre patients and there will be ample free parking onsite.
Clear signposting is provided on main roads into the centre and marked as ‘Riverside Stadium Vaccination Centre’
People driving to the centre are asked to only arrive no more than fifteen minutes before their appointment, this is so traffic can flow in and out of the car park.
There are marshals in the car park to keep traffic moving and ensure that parking is easy and quick.
There is a drop off service onsite for family members and taxis.
The programme has been working with public transport providers to ensure that people who wish to come by public transport understand how they can do so safely.
There is alternative parking for the vaccination centre staff so that they do not look to park in adjacent streets or business car parks.
Vaccinations are by appointment only via the National Booking Service according to priority cohort group.
The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine will be used in the centre, there will not be a choice of vaccine.
For more information on the programme visit: COVID-19 Vaccine – Newcastle Hospitals Coronavirus microsite (newcastle-hospitals.nhs.uk)
Getting to the Riverside Stadium Vaccination Centre
Free On-Site Parking for those attending the Riverside Stadium for their NHS Covid-19 Vaccination
The postcode for the Riverside Stadium is TS3 6RS. A sat nav will lead you to the ground
Route into Middlesbrough by Road
From the North
Approaching Middlesbrough on the A19, cross over the River Tees and take the A66 eastbound towards Middlesbrough town centre. Stay on the A66 past the town centre and follow signs to the stadium, which you will see on your left.
From the South
Leave the A1 (M) at junction 49, signposted to Teesside, and join the A168, which after approximately 11 miles will become the A19. Approximately 19 miles later take the A66 eastbound towards Middlesbrough town centre. Stay on A66 past the town centre (on your right) and follow signs to the stadium, which you will see on your left.
From the West
Leave the A1(M) at junction 57 onto the A66(M). Follow signs to Teesside on the A66. In approximately 18 miles you will pass Middlesbrough town centre (on your right) and follow signs to the stadium, which you will see on your left.