Posted: February 17 2021
Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust immunisation teams were delighted to host a very special visit from have the West End and television personality John Barrowman volunteer at our large vaccination centre in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, on Monday 15 February.
The large vaccination centre at Saxon Court in Milton Keynes has the capacity to deliver thousands of vaccinations each week. It is being run by HCT, drawing on its proven track record of delivering immunisation programmes. HCT has set the centre up with the support of Milton Keynes Council, Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue, the Armed Forces, stewards from the local football team MK Dons, easyJet and other local organisations.
John Barrowman, the Torchwood and Dancing on Ice Star, volunteered as part of the Sun newspaper’s campaign ‘Jabs Army’. He was a surprise friendly face at our reception area and helped to check people in for their appointment, show patients to their seats and ask them about their experience after their vaccination was done. He also talked to NHS staff and volunteers about the huge national effort they were contributing to and praised them for their dedication and hard work.
John said: “It’s an honour to be working alongside the Jabs Army volunteers, NHS staff and Armed Forces. We all have to band together as a team to fight this and we have to do everything together from volunteers to NHS and other clinical staff.
“I think the vaccination programme is wonderful, we should be completely behind everybody who is volunteering and people who are getting the vaccine. I want to be a part of it as I've been isolating along with my family, but let's get life back to normal. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and soon we’ll be able to go back to singing and dancing again!”
Caroline Shepherd, HCT’s Clinical Expert for the vaccination programme, said: “There is a lot of hope and joy at our vaccination centres. For many people this visit is the first time they have left their house in a year. Our team are ready to welcome all local people in the prioritised age groups with confirmed appointments to receive their vaccine, along with health and social care workers from across our area. If you are anxious, please don’t worry, we will look after you.”
Anyone aged 70 and over, as well as those who have been advised to ‘shield’ because they are considered to be clinically extremely vulnerable, are now encouraged to get in contact with the NHS if they haven’t got a first appointment already booked so that they can be vaccinated as soon as possible.
The easiest way to arrange a vaccination is through the national booking service which can be accessed at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination. The system allows eligible people to choose a time slot and location at either a large vaccination site or community pharmacy that suits them.
Anyone from the above groups who are unable to book online can also call 119 free of charge, anytime between 7am and 11pm seven days a week. If a suitable and convenient slot is not available through the national booking system, people can get in contact with their own GP practice. Practice staff will be able to help their eligible patients to book into a local GP-led vaccination centre.
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