Thursday, January 7th, 2021 12:12pm

Lockdown should be used to ‘accelerate’ vaccination programme

Ramsey has ‘the facilities and the scope’ to help boost the rollout of Covid-19 vaccines, according to chairman of the town’s commissioners.

Andy Cowie believes the three-week circuit breaker lockdown could be an opportunity to accelerate the vaccination programme.

Jabs are currently only being administered at Noble’s Hospital in Braddan.

However, Mr Cowie feels there are a number of locations in Ramsey which could be used to offer the jabs.

“I’m not aware of any plans for that, unfortunately”, he said.

“I would certainly hope the Covid team are looking at more sites to increase the throughput and ease of access [of the vaccines] for people around the Island.”

Chief Minister Howard Quayle announced on Tuesday evening that the Isle of Man would enter a circuit breaker lockdown on 7 January after a number of positive coronavirus cases.

It follows almost six months with no social distancing measures in place and restrictions implemented only on those travelling to the Island.

Sandie Hannay, a 55-year old residential support officer, became the first Manx resident to receive the Covid-19 vaccine on Monday (4 January), with almost 650 people receiving the jab in the first two days.

Mr Cowie hopes plenty more residents will get the inoculations while the Island is in lockdown and says using more locations for the vaccination rollout could help.

He added: “We used the courthouse for the flu vaccination programme earlier in the year and that was extremely successful; I think the Ramsey Group Practice team did about 3,500 vaccinations in a week.

“I understand the situation is slightly different with the Covid vaccines but certainly there is the facilities and scope to do that.”

Mr Cowie spoke to Local Democracy Reporter Chris Cave:


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