Catherine McKinnell, MP for Newcastle North, today (4th March 2021) visited the Covid-19 vaccination centre at Newcastle Racecourse in her constituency in Gosforth.
Catherine joined Rebecca Haynes, Chief Operating Officer for Newcastle GP Services, Dr Jane Carman who is lead GP at the centre for the day, and Andy Robinson from the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service to visit the site and see the system at work.
The service reached an important milestone today when the 50,000th vaccine was administered by the GP-led vaccination site since the end of December. The site covers all eligible care home residents and encompasses 31 GP practices. This lifesaving work has been carried out by NHS staff from GP practices, pharmacists, retired healthcare workers, and volunteers from across the region.
The impressive rollout has been achieved through strong partnerships and collaboration of more than 1200 people working together, from GP practices, the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, logistics provided by the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, administrative support by Newcastle City Council Librarians, to Blue Line Taxis, and Go North East who have provided a vaccination bus in order to reach the vulnerable and housebound population.
People who have not yet had the vaccine are asked not to contact their GP about getting a vaccination; they will be contacted as soon as an appointment is to be allocated.
Following the visit, Catherine said:
“I was delighted to visit our local vaccination site at the Racecourse, and very moved to see first-hand the brilliant collaborative work the team there are doing.
“The atmosphere within the centre is really remarkable – so warm and welcoming. It was especially good to have the chance to thank all the volunteers, health workers and local organisations who are working tirelessly together as such an efficient team to protect us from the virus. Without their selfless work, we would not be on the cusp of returning life back to normal. They are true local heroes.
“But it’s crucial that we all play our part too. That’s why I’m urging everyone to take the vaccine as soon as they are offered it. Our only way out of lockdown is by stopping the transmission of Covid-19 – and the best weapon we have against this is the vaccine.
“It’s still incredibly important that we do what we can to keep ourselves and others safe. The restrictions we’ve all lived with are difficult almost a year in, but it’s important that we remember to follow the government guidelines.
“We must still stay at home, wash our hands regularly and wear a face covering. We are so close to being able to see our friends and loved ones again that we must redouble our efforts to stop the coronavirus in its tracks.”
For more information on the Covid-19 vaccine visit: https://coronavirus.newcastle-hospitals.nhs.uk/covid-19-vaccine/
For more details on what to do when invited to Newcastle Racecourse for the vaccine visit: