On the 8 of December, the COVID-19 vaccination programme will celebrate the one year anniversary of the opening of it’s vaccine centre at the Centre for Life in Newcastle.
It was one of the first vaccination centres that were set up across the country and the first of seven large centres that opened in the North East and North Cumbria to vaccinate large numbers of people quickly.
The doors were first opened to NHS frontline staff including nurses, doctors, pharmacists working nearby as well as care home and social care workers ahead of the centre’s public opening on 11 January 2021.
The large centre provided an alternative choice for the most vulnerable and provided extra capacity alongside teams in GP practices, who were to deliver the majority of the vaccines as well as hospital hubs.
Invitations were first issued to the over 80’s asking them to come forward for their vaccine and make an appointment.
To date, the Centre for Life has administered 231,534 vaccine doses.
This is ,110,189 first doses, 110,796 second doses and 10,549 boosters.
Both Pfizer and AstraZeneca have been given 60,591 Pfizer doses and
170,942 AstraZeneca doses have been used there.
This means that 26% of the total volume of vaccines delivered by vaccination centres has been delivered by the Centre for Life, out of a total of seven across the North East and North Cumbria.
Since the opening of the first large centre, there have been 6 other VCs, 68 Primary care networks, 193 community pharmacy locations and hundreds of pop up and mobile vaccination services to serve the full population of the region.
In total 5,461,198 vaccinations have been administered by hundreds of healthcare staff and trained volunteers meaning that on average 74% have received the first 2 doses, 35% have had their booster percent of the regional population is protected from COVID-19.
Professor Neil Watson, who heads up the COVID-19 vaccination programme for the North East and North Cumbria said:
“I remember that very first day where we had people who were so very keen to get their vaccine. One lady in particular stood out for me. It was the first time she had been out of the house in months, she was so grateful and said it was like a day trip out.”
“It was an enormous privilege to be able to witness that joy and to be part of delivering hope to people.”
“Everyone who has worked on the programme of course have worked very hard and continue to do so as we deliver vaccines to the over 12’s and boosters ahead of winter.” “Without their collective effort, we would not be in the position that we are now. Thank you to every single person who has helped to make this programme a success.”