Covid-19 vaccination rates in Portsmouth among the country's best and Queen Alexandra Hospital Covid patient numbers almost halve
VACCINATION rates for the over-60s across Portsmouth have been cheered by politicians across the city, as latest figures reveal the rates are among the country’s best.
Data from NHS England shows that 92 per cent of over-60s have received their first vaccine jab across Portsmouth with an identical rate across Gosport, Fareham, and Havant as of March 7.
This is above the national average of 88.9 per cent of over-60s receiving at least one vaccine dose.
Across Hampshire the rate is 88 per cent, while in London it is 81.7 per cent.
The MP for Portsmouth North, Penny Mordaunt, praised healthcare professionals across the area for the ‘truly wonderful’ result.
She said: ‘The vaccination numbers are truly wonderful.
‘(There are) so many healthcare professionals and volunteers working around the clock to save lives – thank you all.
‘We need to keep going and to give confidence to those who have yet to take up the offer of a jab.
‘In doing so, you will be helping keep others safe as well as yourself safe.’
Almost 97 per cent of over-65s in Portsmouth have received a jab, but the rate is lower when looking at just the over-80s in the city.
The vaccination roll-out has reached 95 per cent of the older age group.
Those yet to take up the vaccine offer may be housebound, have questions about the process, or have trouble reading and understanding material sent to them, according to Portsmouth City Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson.
He said: ‘If people have questions, the NHS are the experts and there is a number people can call.
‘And I have been talking to the NHS about getting teams out to give injections to people who are housebound.’
It comes as the number of Covid-19 patients in beds at Queen Alexandra Hospital have almost halved in just over a month.
Figures published by NHS England show there were 165 patients with coronavirus at the Cosham hospital as of March 9, with 14 on mechanical ventilation.
On February 8, there were 297 patients with Covid-19 occupying beds in the hospital.
Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan praised local NHS workers, frontline workers and volunteers for their ‘phenomenal job’, calling the figures ‘really encouraging’.
He added: ‘But we are not out of the woods yet and we must continue to follow the rules and stay safe.
‘If you are offered a vaccine, please make sure to take it if you are able to.’
Anyone with questions about the vaccination process can call the NHS on 119.