I would like to start this week by thanking everyone who has worked to contain the recent outbreak of Covid in the Moorlands. Having joined in the efforts, I know how many people were involved.
I have regular calls with senior healthcare professionals and last week was pleased to hear that the spike in the Moorlands is now coming down. As you know the outbreak involved some schools and 11 – 18 year olds and, to date, no-one over 60.
This demonstrates just how well the vaccine rollout is going and how well those vaccines are protecting us and reducing the more serious hospital admissions that we saw earlier on in the pandemic. Unlike previous outbreaks, very few people have needed to be treated for Covid in hospital, with most of those who tested positive being asymptomatic or with only mild symptoms.
I am so proud that the North Staffordshire and Stoke Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has the highest vaccination rate in the country but I am even prouder to learn that the Moorlands has the highest vaccination rate within the CCG, putting us right at the top of the league in the country. This is excellent news and shows just how well we dealt with the outbreak and how initiatives such as the pop up vaccination centre at Leek Moorlands Hospital and the surge testing were all so successful.
The national vaccination target is to get everyone over 18 vaccinated with a first dose by 19th July and locally we are well on track to do this.
The national surge response is also to bring second doses forward to 8 weeks for over 40s and I was pleased also to see the Big Weekend initiative take place last weekend with walk in clinics available to get even more people vaccinated.