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Communities and agencies come together against cost-of-living crisis and winter illness

Local people will have the opportunityt to access advice and support on a range of health and lifestyle issues at a new Community Lounge, which launches in Blurton on Wednesday 16 November.

The initiative aims to bring communities, volunteers, charities, local businesses, and health and social care services together to offer a supportive and warm environment at the most local level.

Alongside representatives from mental health charities, housing charities, ‘Beat the Cold’ and Carelink, COVID-19 vaccinators will be on hand to talk to people about the vaccine and offer vital vaccination against serious illness this winter.

Dr Paddy Hannigan, Clinical Lead for the vaccination programme in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, said: “Since the COVID-19 vaccination programme began, NHS vaccinators have worked tirelessly to reach local people and to take the vaccine out into communities. Having COVID-19 vaccinations available at Community Lounges is another way we are working with our communities to get the vaccine to people who may not otherwise come forward.

“COVID-19 has not gone away, and it is really important to get the next dose of the vaccine when you are called so that you have the best protection against the virus. Flu is also on the rise and it is much more likely that you’ll become more unwell if you were to get COVID-19 and flu at the same time.

“People who are eligible should protect themselves, their families, and friends by getting both the COVID-19 and flu vaccinations as soon as possible.”

Cllr Lorraine Beardmore, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure, and Public Health at Stoke-on-Trent City Council said: “We’re delighted to offer these community spaces to our local population. We’re providing a one-stop-shop for support and advice on keeping warm this winter, energy bills, and budgeting alongside healthcare advice and COVID-19 vaccination.

“We’re working with health and social care partners to keep local people well this winter and beyond.”

Anyone is welcome to attend the Community Lounge, which is a safe space for communities to gather, support each other, and access health, social, and lifestyle services.

The launch of the Community Lounge in Blurton is on Wednesday 16 November between 10am to 12 noon with vaccinations available until 2pmon launch day.

The Community Lounge will then take place every Friday from 10am to 1pm at Affordable Foods, 77-81 Meaford Drive, Blurton, ST3 2BB.

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