Friday, 05 March 2021

Jabs for vulnerable under-65s

Jabs for vulnerable under-65s

ADULTS in the Henley area under the age of 65 who are vulnerable due to a medical condition are now being offered a coronavirus vaccination.

Those between 65 and 70 are also being called up for the first of their two jabs, which are administered up to 12 weeks apart, as most aged over 70 have had theirs.

The former will attend their GP surgeries while the over-65s will be asked to visit clinics at the Kassam Stadium in Oxford as part of a national programme.

Those considered vulnerable include people with blood cancer, diseases of the heart, liver or kidneys, diabetes, immune or neurological conditions, chronic illness, obesity or severe mental illness or learning disabilities.

The older patients had been told to expect their jabs locally but the plan was changed at the last minute at the start of the week. A small number received their first jab before health bosses sent new instructions to the surgeries.

The Bell Surgery in Henley will also be vaccinating vulnerable patients from Sonning Common Health Centre, which is part of the same “cluster”.

This is because they are getting the older Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which must be kept at -70C and the practice off York Road has suitable storage. The jab is as effective as the newer Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, which doesn’t have to be stored in a freezer.

Sonning Common health centre apologised to patients for any confusion, adding: “Information about vaccine delivery changes frequently. We appreciate your patience while we do our best to immunise as many patients as we can.”

Meanwhile, coronavirus cases in South Oxfordshire continue to decline. Laboratory or lateral flow tests have confirmed 123 new infections in the past seven days compared with 155 the week before and a peak of 713.

The infection rate is now 86.6 cases per 100,000 of the population, down from 109 last week, while the total number of cases is 5,401.

In all, 159 people have now died within 28 days of a positive diagnosis, up by three. A total of 203 have died with covid-19 listed as a cause.

This week’s new cases included: Henley (17), Shiplake and Binfield Heath (three or fewer), Sonning Common and Kidmore End (four), Twyford East and Wargrave (three), Goring, Whitchurch and Woodcote (three or fewer), Benson and Crowmarsh (nine), Watlington and Nettlebed (three), the Hambleden Valley (three or fewer), Caversham Park and Emmer Green (three or fewer), Caversham Heights (four), central Caversham (seven) and Lower Caversham (eight).

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