The NHS Nightingale Hospital is set to be one of seven mass vaccination centres opening this week.

Hundreds of thousands of the mobility retail sector’s key demographic – people aged 80 and over – are being invited to book a coronavirus vaccination at the new NHS vaccination centres that open this week.

The first 130,000 letters began arriving on doormats this weekend with more than 500,000 following this week, with the national vaccination programme “rapidly accelerating”, according to NHS England.

The letters have been sent to people aged 80 or over who live 30 to 45 minutes drive from one of the seven new sites and explain how they can book a slot – over the phone or online through the national booking service.

Vaccination centres, such as the London Nightingale Hospital and Manchester’s Etihad Stadium, offer a convenient alternative to GP and hospital services and can each deliver thousands of vaccinations every week.

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In a move that was welcomed by the BHTA, nurses, doctors, physios and other NHS staff working nearby are also being jabbed at the centres, along with social care and care home workers.

NHS National Medical Director Professor Stephen Powis said that the coronavirus vaccination programme, the largest in NHS history, has got off to a strong start.

“With more vaccine supplies now coming on stream we are rapidly accelerating the programme and these large scale NHS vaccination centres are an important new way for people to get the life-saving jab, alongside our GP and hospital services.

“NHS staff are under huge pressure with big rises in coronavirus infections leaving record numbers needing hospital treatment but are still pull out all the stops to deliver Covid jabs as swiftly as we can.”

One vaccination centre will open in each of the seven NHS regions this week with many more expected to be up and running by the end of the month.

The seven vaccination sites are: Ashton Gate in Bristol (South West), Epsom racecourse in Surrey (South East), Excel Centre in London (London), The Centre for Life (North East and Yorkshire), Eithiad Tennis Club in Manchester (North West), Robertson House in Stevenage (East of England) and Millennium Point in Birmingham (Midlands).

These sites are due to open alongside almost 200 new GP-services and more hospital services this week.

There are already almost 1,000 vaccination sites across the country. The vast majority, almost 800, are GP-led services and they are expected to deliver most of the vaccinations.

The acceleration of the vaccination rollout is good news for the mobility retail industry, which as with the rest of the UK’s retail sector, has seen a reduction in footfall over the past year.

The mobility retail sector has been particularly hard hit by having a customer base largely made up of elderly and disabled people who are likely to be classed as clinically extremely vulnerable, and therefore more likely to need to stay at home in order to stay safe, which has had an adverse effect on store sales.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that the vaccination centres are an important milestone.

“They will work hand in hand with GPs, pharmacies, hospitals and care homes to offer vaccines to everyone in the top four priority cohorts, saving thousands of lives and helping us start to return to normal in the future.”

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https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/The-London-Nightingale-Hospital-in-London.jpg?fit=900%2C675&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/The-London-Nightingale-Hospital-in-London.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Liane McIvorCOVID-19 Sector NewsGovernment & Local AuthoritiesNewsroomNHSRetailer NewsSector Newsaged 80,BHTA,elderly,London Nightingale Hospital,Matt Hancock,Mobility,NHS England,programme,vaccinationHundreds of thousands of the mobility retail sector’s key demographic – people aged 80 and over – are being invited to book a coronavirus vaccination at the new NHS vaccination centres that open this week. The first 130,000 letters began arriving on doormats this weekend with more than 500,000 following...News, views & products for mobility, access and independent living professionals