A vaccine which protects against Covid-19 is being distributed in the UK today as part of the biggest mass vaccination campaign in NHS history. People aged over 80 in hospital, frontline health staff and care home workers will be first to get the jab at 70 designated hospitals hubs across the UK, including Dorset County Hospital. Residents in care homes will start to be vaccinated within two weeks and other high-risk groups will follow over the coming months.

Healthwatch Dorset welcomes the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine. We regularly speak to people from across the county about their health and care experiences, so we know that people are looking forward to finding out more about how the vaccine will be distributed locally. We also know that there are local concerns about how vulnerable people will get vaccinated. Dorset is a large county and travel can be difficult, especially for people who don’t have their own transport.

What we all need now is clear and understandable information so that people feel they’re able to make informed choices about their health and care. It is important that communication about the full vaccinations programme (who is getting it, when, why, where and how) is tailored to meet people’s needs and shared widely.

As local plans become clearer, Healthwatch Dorset will aim to raise awareness and support the public with information and advice.

If people have any questions or concerns do get in touch with us.  Even if we don’t have the answer straight away, we can find out and we can pass on your feedback and raise any issues with those responsible for health care in the county. You can contact us at www.healthwatchdorset.co.uk or you can call us on 0300 111 0102.

For more information:

NHS – Coronavirus Vaccination

NHS in Dorset Starts Biggest Ever NHS Vaccination Programme This Week

COVID-19 Vaccinations Q&A