More than 80% of over 80s in City have received vaccine

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Most elderly City residents are taking up the offer of getting vaccinated against Covid, according to the latest data.

It means that 83 per cent of over 80s in the City have got their jab, compared with 63 per cent in neighbouring Hackney.

Overall just over half or 12,546 people out of 21,020 eligible residents in the top priority groups in City and Hackney had been  vaccinated by February 6.

Richard Bull from City and Hackney Clinical Commissioning Group said everyone has been contacted by their practices several times to offer them the jab. And medics are also talking to people about any reticence they may have.

But he said there were people declining to have the jab or missing their appointments.

Vaccinators are also visiting the housebound – including an extra 200 added to the list during the current Covid crisis.

In the Square Mile just one per cent of eligible patients have declined the jab, compared with six per cent in Hackney.

It comes as number crunchers say the medical data in City and Hackney is showing that lockdown is working .

Diana Divajeva  health data analyst  said the number of positive tests is continuing to drop. “Lockdown is working,” she said.

“We have seen a really significant decrease  in incident  rates.”

She said there were higher rates in younger adults and the 45 to 64 age group but they are under 250 per 100,000, and are still trending downwards.

Sadly January saw a quarter of all Covid deaths so far in the City. Hackney saw 129 deaths in that month – 31 per cent of all deaths it has seen so far.

Ms Divajeva  said however the number of critical care, acute and general  hospital beds being used for coronavirus patients has dropped from 50 per cent in January to 20 per cent in February.

Sandra Husbands, the head of public health for City and Hackney said: “As a system we have managed extremely well, with the state of the pandemic and extremely cold weather we’ve had  recently we might have expected having a much worse time.”

Dr Mark Rickets, the chair of the CCG said: “It is fundamental to continue to attend to these cohorts 1 to 4 (the over 70s and extremely clinically vulnerable) to overcome their hesitancy.”

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Even when the emphasis moves to younger age groups people will still be able to get their jab if they change their mind.

And the figures from February 6 show that 82 per cent of 75 to 79-year-olds had been vaccinated, with 65 per cent in Hackney.

Bart’s Hospital has been vaccinating over 75s who live nearby too.

The figures show a marked difference in the 70 to 74-year-old age group  and anyone who is extremely clinically vulnerable. Where just 54 per cent of eligible Hackney residents have been vaccinated, the Square Mile reported an 80 per cent take up.

GP Haren Patel, from the Latimer Health Centre in Hackney said word of mouth is proving a valuable way of encouraging people to get vaccinated.

“Gradually they change their minds when they see their friends having it are alive, and when they hear  stories of people going into hospital with the virus.”

Jake Ferguson from Hackney CVS said: “There is a sense  of mistrust which springs from decades of what people perceive as  structural racism.”

And community leaders are working to help  people’s concerns with events for the  Charedi Orthodox Jewish  community, African and Caribbean communities and Turkish communities this month.

Mr Bull said the stats are changing all the time .

“At the end of last week it was an extremely busy week, there’s a lot of activity going on.”

There were 3,884 appointments on offer this week.

However he added: “There’s a lot of strong resistance out there,  with people deferring and declining the vaccine.”

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