PRESSURES OF WINTER: Middlesbrough vaccine rates falling behind
Redcar’s Margaret Dixon was one of the first to receive the Pfizer vaccine: Image: South Tees Hospitals NHS Trust
Middlesbrough is falling behind its Tees Valley neighbours for vaccine rates as health services already start to feel the pressures of winter.
As of September 19, 70% of people had received both vaccine doses in Middlesbrough, compared to 81% in Redcar and Cleveland, 78% in Hartlepool, nearly 80% in Stockton-on-Tees and 80% in Darlington.
The government’s aim is for 90% of people to be vaccinated.
In the over 50s category alone in Middlesbrough, there are still 4,300 people who have not received their jab.
Speaking at the Tees Valley Joint Health Scrutiny Committee, South Tees public health chief Mark Adams said: “It is something we have focussed on in Middlesbrough and Redcar and Cleveland quite a bit and these numbers have stayed stubbornly high.
“Clearly where most of the risk of hospitalisation sits is within the unvaccinated over 50s.”
In South Tees, men are less likely to be vaccinated and of the 4,300 over 50s who have not received their jab around 62% are men.
All over 50s, who have received their first two jabs, will receive a booster vaccination this winter, however, they will need to wait six months since they received their second Covid injection.
Health bosses have also warned that services are already feeling the same level of winter impact, that would usually be felt in January.
The chief officer at NHS Tees Valley CCG David Gallagher said: “Talking with colleagues, not just in hospitals, but in primary care, I guess in social services as well, there is a feeling that just at the moment, while we are talking about winter pressures and planning for winter, it actually feels pressure-wise like it’s in January.
“I think just assuming that the rates of people who are in hospital will persist and pertain into the winter and beyond, which is something that we probably hadn’t thought we would need to do but we need to do.”
In the last week, Middlesbrough has seen 494 cases, which has decreased by 9% on the previous week.
In Stockton, there have been 580 cases in the last week which is a fall of 4.8%.
In Redcar and Cleveland, 399 people had a confirmed positive Covid result, which is nearly 18% down on the previous week.
In Hartlepool, 312 people had a confirmed positive Covid test in the last week, a decrease of 13.1%.
However, numbers in Darlington have increased by 13.3% and there were 383 Covid cases in the last week.
Where can you get a walk-in Covid jab in Teesside this weekend?
- Saturday September 25, Northumbria Vaccine Bus, Mill House Leisure Centre Car Park (adjacent to Hartlepool Football Club), Raby Rd, TS24 8AR, 10am- 6pm. First & second doses Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Covid boosters.
- Saturday September 25, Pavillion Shopping Centre - Unit 4 Pavilion Shopping Centre, Thornaby, TS17 9FF, 9am-6:30pm. First and second doses of Pfizer and Moderna (Age 17 years and 9 months plus).
- Saturday September 25, Unit 5, Wellington Square, TS18 1NA, 2pm – 6pm. First and second doses of Pfizer.
- Sunday September 26, Ingleby Barwick, Community Centre Haresfield Way, Beckfields Ave, Thornaby, Stockton-on-Tees TS17 0YL, 9am-6:30pm. First and second doses of Pfizer and Moderna (Age 17 years and 9 months plus).
- Saturday September 25, Darlington Arena, DL2 1DL, 10am – 6pm. First and second doses Pfizer.
- Sunday September 26, Darlington Arena, DL2 1DL, 10am – 6pm. First and second doses Pfizer
- Sunday September 26, Riverside Stadium, TS3 6RS, 10am-6pm. First and second doses Pfizer.
Words: Emily Craigie, Local Demcoracy Reporter
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