Croydon University Hospital is gearing up to start coronavirus vaccinations from tomorrow.
Staff at the hospital worked over the weekend to prepare for the start of the biggest immunisation programme in history.
First in line for the Pfizer vaccine will be people aged 80 and over, as well as care home workers and high risk NHS workers
Croydon is one of 50 hubs across the country in the first wave of vaccinations.
Patients aged 80 and above who are already attending hospital as an outpatient, and those who are being discharged home after a hospital stay, will be among the first to receive the potentially life-saving jab.
Hospitals will also begin inviting over 80s in for a jab and work with care home providers to book their staff in to vaccination clinics.
Any appointments not used for these groups will be used for healthcare workers who are at highest risk of serious illness from Covid. All those vaccinated will need a booster jab 21 days later.
Joint chief pharmacist, Louise Coughlan, pictured above, said: “It is just incredible, obviously I can’t hold them in my hands because they are minus 70 degrees, but to know they are here and we are among the first in the country to receive the vaccine and therefore the first in the world is just amazing. I am so proud.
“The hospital is just going through the final checks to implement the vaccination programme.”
The next stage of the vaccination programme will see more GP practices issuing the vaccine during December, as well as the opening of large centres including conference centres and sporting venues.
Matthew Kershaw, chief executive of Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, said: “This is a pivotal moment for the country and for us in Croydon, as one of the first hospital hubs to receive the Covid-19 vaccine.
“We’re delighted to be playing our part, vaccinating the most vulnerable people in our communities and ensuring the safety of our patients, our local people and our health and care professionals who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic.”
Please support your local paper by making a donation
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing recently: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.