Island residents who wish to have a vaccination to reduce the risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID-19 are urged to register now, before the current phase of the rollout draws to a close.
The vaccination programme is well advanced and currently focusing on second doses for all those who had their first vaccine when their age priority group was invited to come forward. Those who missed registering when it was their turn - but still wish to be vaccinated - have consistently been encouraged to register, to ensure vaccine and appointment slots are allocated to them.
The call to come forward is now urgent, as supplies of all types of vaccine for this phase of the programme will soon be exhausted, ahead of preparations for the vaccination booster programme later this year.
Further clinics have been arranged next week (14 & 15 June) for adults of all ages who haven’t previously been vaccinated, with the potential for more sessions to meet additional registrations. First doses of Moderna, the third safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine to be used in the programme, will be offered to people aged under 40, with the AstraZeneca vaccine given to those over the age of 40, except where an individual cannot receive it for clinical reasons. Second doses for this catch-up cohort have been scheduled for later in the summer.
Anyone who wishes to be included should register with 111 now and no later than 21 June.
Minister for Health and Social Care David Ashford said: ‘We have made every effort to invite, register and vaccinate the adult population by priority group – but we appreciate there are a number of people who couldn’t come forward at the time, for a variety of reasons.
‘We will soon be moving on to the revaccination programme – another large and complex logistical exercise, and before long our resources will be focused on that. Revaccination will play a vital part in the continued efforts in the UK and Isle of Man to reduce the spread of the virus, prevent serious illness and death, and protect our health services.
The Minister added: ‘The end of the current rollout of vaccinations is on the horizon – as we will cease receiving supplies. So I urge anyone who still wants vaccine protection from COVID-19 to make themselves known by calling 111, as we do not want them to miss out. There won’t be another ‘mop up’ process for several months, so don’t hesitate any longer - please act now!’
Since the start of the Vaccination Programme, almost 90,000 vaccinations have been administered, including well over 61,000 first doses. Almost 85% of the adult population has had at least one dose, gaining protection from coronavirus and its variants.
The Isle of Man Government has adopted a mitigation strategy, with members of the public encouraged to make their own decisions about protecting themselves and their families from coronavirus. No longer seeking to eliminate the virus, Government’s focus now is on supporting the community to learn to live with it.
Thousands of appointments have been booked and vaccine allocated for the coming weeks, so it is very important people attend on the date and at the time they have been given. Second doses of vaccine are required for the fullest protection, both for individuals and the wider community. People should therefore not seek to rearrange their appointment – but to fit other plans around it.