The pace at which the Covid-19 vaccination programme has been rolled out in Cheshire East has received unanimous praise from elected members of Cheshire East Council.
Led by the mayor, Councillor Barry Burkhill, leaders of all groups on the council have heaped praise on the staff and volunteers, including retired doctors and health workers, members of Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service and the army, who are continuing to deliver the vaccination programme across Cheshire East.
In an open letter to be published, Councillor Burkhill says: “The Covid-19 vaccination programme across Cheshire East has been a real success story, and it is right and proper that the tireless work of so many people is celebrated.
“We still have a long way to go, but with the commitment, hard work and dedication shown by so many, I am confident that the vaccination programme will continue to roll out at speed.”
He goes on to encourage everyone to sign up for a vaccination when offered. He adds: “For those like myself, who because of my age, was fortunate to be vaccinated early in the rollout of the programme, I would remind them to have their second jab when they are offered an appointment.
“Working together we can beat Covid-19. On behalf of all Cheshire East Councillors – a heartfelt thank you to everyone involved in the vaccination programme.”
Council leader, Councillor Sam Corcoran, said: “Thanks to the hard work of our three NHS trusts, our GP practices and volunteers, this vaccination programme continues to go well, while Cheshire East Council has played an important supportive role through the people helping people service.
“To all those involved – from the people who are cleaning our vaccination centres, volunteers, administrators and staff who have gritted car parks – I would like to say a big thank you!
“It is no coincidence that something run locally by our own NHS clinicians and GP practices has been such a success. I also want to give a special thanks to our three trusts whose outstanding efforts have been responsible for ensuring our frontline care staff are vaccinated and have played a vital part in setting up the mass vaccination centre at Alderley Park.”
Deputy leader, Councillor Craig Browne, said: “It is important to recognise the role volunteers have played throughout the pandemic and if there is one positive to come out of a very dark period in our lives, it is the way in which people have come forward to support each other.”
Working with charities, community and faith groups, the council has helped to mobilise 4,000 volunteers, many of whom have been involved in the distribution of food parcels. More than 1,000 shielding residents have received food parcels of quality and more than 11,000 food and energy vouchers have been distributed to vulnerable children and families.
The council recently supported unanimously a notice of motion tabled by Councillor Rachel Bailey expressing the council’s gratitude to health staff, volunteers and Cheshire Fire and Rescue for their contribution to the vaccination programme.
Councillor Bailey said: “It is right that we put on record our thanks to all involved, not least to represent the thanks of our residents.”
In Cheshire East, nearly 153,000 people have received their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, including 95 per cent of over 70s.