Millions of people aged 70 and over and those clinically extremely vulnerable to Covid-19 will be invited to get their vaccinations from today (Monday 18 January) as the NHS begins roll out of the vaccines to the next two priority groups.
Fiona Loud, Policy Director at Kidney Care UK, said: "We are delighted that invitations for vaccination will start for all clinically extremely vulnerable adults, which includes the 70,000 people on dialysis, with transplants or with late stage kidney disease. We welcome this vital lifesaving decision and look forward to all clinically extremely vulnerable kidney patients receiving their first dose in the next four weeks. However, we are aware that different parts of the country are rolling out at different speeds and want to see that all CEV people receive their invitations at pace no matter where they live. Equally we want to see that the rollout is followed up with timely appointments for second vaccine doses to maximise protection for those with kidney disease.”
It is your choice whether you have the vaccine but your kidney team would strongly recommend that you do as this will protect the large majority. Over the last four weeks data shows that three kidney patients are being diagnosed with Covid-19 every hour, so the risks of becoming very sick with Covid-19 are far higher than the extremely small risk of side effects from vaccination".
For the past few weeks we have joined our medical colleagues in campaigning for kidney patients to be prioritised to receive vaccination against Covid-19, starting with those on in centre haemodialysis who are at particular risk as they have to travel three times a week to hospital for their treatment
Thank you to Alex Norris MP and Dan Jarvis MP for supporting kidney patients and raising Parliamentary Questions, such as this, where the Vaccines Minister said “the JCVI has recognised that persons on ICHD attend healthcare facilities regularly & has agreed that implementation teams should take advantage of this setting to vaccinate eligible individuals”.
The NHS says that it has so far been working to vaccinate the first two priority cohorts recommended by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), which are care home residents and staff, and those aged 80 and over, and frontline health and care staff.
Vaccinating the first two groups will remain the priority, but vaccination sites which have enough supply and capacity for vaccinating further people are allowed to offer vaccinations to the next two cohorts - those aged 70 and over and clinically extremely vulnerable people.
This will allow areas that have already vaccinated the majority of care home residents, frontline health and care staff and people aged 80 and over to keep up the momentum and start vaccinating further at-risk people, helping the NHS to reach the Prime Minister’s commitment of offering vaccinations to the first four priority groups by the middle of February.
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