NHS Chief executive Sir Simon Stevens visited the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust earlier today to thank staff involved in the NHS Covid vaccine programme.
Sir Stevens spoke alongside May Parsons, the nurse who gave the first COVID vaccination in the world outside of a clinical trial to Maggie Keenan on December 8th.
May Parson said “It was a huge honour to be the first person in the country to deliver a COVID-19 vaccine to a patient and play my part in what was an historic day.”
May who is originally from the Philippines and has worked in the NHS for 24 years spoke of how tough the last few months had been for the NHS.
“The last few months have been tough for all of us working in the NHS, but it feels like there is light at the end of the tunnel as the numbers of vaccinations rapidly increase across the country.”
Sir Simon Stevens said: “It is thanks to fantastic staff like May that the NHS is delivering Europe’s fastest and largest Covid vaccination programme.
Sir Simon called upon anyone from the top four priority groups who has not yet accepted the offer of a jab to contact the NHS to arrange one.
Since the programme started on December 8th, over 12 million doses have been delivered in England at more than 1,500 sites including more than 1,000 GP-led services and over 250 hospitals.
NHS England say’s the top four priority groups – people aged 70 and over, care home residents and staff, health and care staff and clinically extremely vulnerable patients – have been offered the opportunity to be vaccinated.
Any health and care staff who have not so far accepted but would now like to do so have been asked to contact their employer who is responsible for arranging their vaccination.
Others in the initial priority groups can arrange a jab through the national booking system at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or by calling 119.
Those who cannot get a convenient appointment that way should contact their GP practice.