A year ago this week, Mona Thomas, then 92, became the first person in Cheshire to receive a COVID-19 vaccination outside of a clinical trial.
Since that historic moment, more than 1.3 million vaccinations have been administered across the county at GP practices, pharmacies, hospital hubs, mass vaccination centres, community centres, church halls and schools.
Despite this outstanding progress, tens of thousands of eligible people remain unvaccinated and many others eligible for a second or booster jab.
Clare Watson, Accountable Officer of NHS Cheshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Thank you to everyone who has come forward for their vaccinations and to all the volunteers, health and care providers and wider stakeholders who have been working on the vaccination programme across Cheshire for the last 12 months. It continues to be an outstanding example of partnership working and community spirit.
“With Christmas just around the corner, it is really important that we are all as protected as we can be against COVID-19. If you’re eligible, please arrange your vaccination appointments online via the National Booking Service, by calling 119 or by responding to an invitation from your local NHS service.
“In line with updated national guidance, many more people will very soon become newly-eligible for a booster dose. If you were not already eligible, please do not contact the NHS. The NHS will let you know when it is your turn to take up the offer.”
Dr Matt Tyrer, Director of Public Health at Cheshire East Council, said: “We would like to thank the residents of Cheshire East for their strong engagement with the vaccination programme, resulting in the very high uptake in the past year.
“I would urge anyone who has not been vaccinated so far to get their jab and encourage those who have already been vaccinated to go for the COVID-19 booster vaccination as soon as you are eligible to receive it.
“Vaccination is the best thing you can do to boost your own natural defences and protect yourself against COVID-19 and all of its variants.”
Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “The vaccination programme has been really quite remarkable and a fantastic example of joined up working between the NHS, Local Authorities, communities and volunteers. We are very proud to be playing a part in its success.
“The vaccinations work, are safe and are our best line of defence against this horrible virus. Make sure that you and your loved ones are up-to-date with your vaccines and boosters.”
Vaccination is clinically-proven to reduce your risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 and your risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.
Clare Watson, Accountable Officer of NHS Cheshire Clinical Commissioning Group.