Keep the faith

By Dr Wirin Bhatiani

Well, it’s not the start to 2021 we hoped for!

It was looking positive at the end of 2020 as, following various restrictions, Covid cases were falling.

But, in a few days over the festive period, cases (accelerated by a new coronavirus strain) soared and we’re back in national lockdown.

More patients are being admitted to hospital, placing great pressure on the NHS, and we are again at a crucial point.

But this time we have hope. The biggest vaccination programme in the UK’s history is under way and more vaccines have been approved.

Our vaccination programme started in Bolton on December 15 with the most vulnerable – the over-80s and care home residents – the first to receive the jab.

Since then we have worked hard to open more local vaccination sites across the borough.

This a huge task for us and we have a lot of people to get through. But be assured - you will be offered the vaccine when it’s your turn.

People over 80 are also being offered the opportunity to attend the new regional vaccination centre at the Etihad. This is an additional option – you can still wait for your invitation to get vaccinated at your local centre in Bolton if that is more convenient.

We know that people will have many questions about the rollout of this vaccine, so we’ve posted some common FAQs on our website.

While vaccines are bringing hope, we must not become complacent. The virus remains a real danger and we need to continue to be vigilant.

Last year people stood on their doorsteps every Thursday to applaud our NHS staff and other key workers. Now we must show our support for the NHS by sticking to the lockdown restrictions and coming forward to be vaccinated when invited.

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