Millionth person in south east London receives their first Covid-19 vaccine

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South east London, home to nearly 2 million people, has reached the milestone of its millionth person to receive their first Covid-19 vaccination this week.

Our Healthier South East London Integrated Care System (ICS), which brings together NHS statutory organisations, borough councils, general practice and other non-statutory bodies has coordinated the vaccine rollout across Bexley, Bromley, Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham, and Southwark.

Reflection on reaching this milestone

The first person in south east London to get their vaccine at the beginning of December 2020 was Lyn Wheeler, who has since reflected on her experience online.

Lyn Wheeler meets UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson after becoming the first person in south east London to get a COVID vaccine.
Lyn Wheeler meets UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson after becoming the first person in south east London to get a COVID vaccine.

Dr Andrew Parson is the clinical lead for the vaccination programme in south east London:“Reaching the milestone of one million people receiving their first vaccination is a huge moment for us. We know that the vaccines are safe and effective and help to protect people from Covid-19.

“It’s important that we don’t lose momentum now – ensuring people do attend their second vaccinations will be just as important as the first, so we’re encouraging people to continue to come forward when invited.”

A big thank you to all involved so far

On behalf of the ICS, Bromley’s Borough Director and Consultant in Public Health, Dr Angela Bhan said: “This is a significant milestone for south east London. It truly is a testament to the work of so many people including volunteers, vaccinators, NHS trusts and their staff, primary care networks, our six local authorities, the Armed Forces and St John’s Ambulance.”

Questions on the vaccine

“Although we have 67% uptake overall in south east London, we know that there are still a number of people feeling less confident about taking up the vaccine,” said Dr Bhan.

“We have also found that people who have been invited and have not taken the vaccine often have questions about the safety and efficacy. As the vaccination programme continues, we want to ensure that we are reaching everyone in sharing this information, which is why we launched the Vaccine Facts resource to provide people with straight-forward answers to questions they have.

As different groups of people become eligible for the vaccine there will undoubtedly be different questions and concerns, and it’s important that everyone has access to clear, accurate information so they feel confident to take up their first and second vaccine as soon as they are invited.”

Where you can access more information

Over the next several weeks Our Healthier South East London ICS will continue to roll out the Vaccine Facts information resource to answer questions and encourage people to come forward when it is their turn. The resource profiles several south east Londoners who share their experiences of getting the vaccine and why it was important for them.

The information resource website, nhsselondonvaccinefacts.com is now live for people to access.

Video Playlist – Hear from south east London residents who have already had their vaccine