Huge ‘grab a jab’ vaccine drive rolls out across England as Covid cases rise

The walk-in vaccination sites are open to all adults for first and second doses and do not require an appointment

Hundreds of walk-in vaccination sites have opened across England today (26 June) in a drive to get more people immunised against Covid-19.

The sites, which are based all around the country, are open to all adults ages 18 and over and do not require an appointment to attend.

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Hundreds of walk-in vaccination sites have opened across England today (Photo: Getty Images)
Hundreds of walk-in vaccination sites have opened across England today (Photo: Getty Images)

At a glance: 5 key points

- Any adult in England can be vaccinated this weekend without an appointment at the hundreds of walk-in sites, which include football stadiums, theatres, supermarket car parks and shopping centres.

- Newcastle Eagles basketball arena, Watford’s Vicarage Road, Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium and Birmingham’s Edgbaston cricket ground are among the sports grounds involved in the mass rollout.

- Buses offering jabs will also operate in Dudley, Colchester and Ipswich, among others, while community vaccinations will visit the housebound.

- The drop-in centres will be open for adults having their first vaccine dose, but people over 40 who had their jab at least eight weeks ago, and under 40s who had it at least 12 weeks ago, will be able to drop-in for their second dose.

- Anyone who attends a walk-in centre for their first dose this weekend will have their vaccination record updated online and will then be able to book an appointment for their second dose using the NHS national booking system.

What’s been said

NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said the country is now in a “race to the finish line” in its vaccination programme, and hopes the convenience of the walk-in sites will encourage more adults to go and get their jab.

Sir Simon said: “With more than 63 million jabs already delivered by the NHS in England, we’re now in a race to the finish line, and with this new online service, it is easier than ever to find a convenient place to get your vaccine.

“With every jab given, we are one step closer to our summer freedoms.”

Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi and London Mayor Sadiq Khan joined a London vaccine summit on Friday (25 June) in an effort to boost vaccine uptake in the capital, which is lagging behind the rest of the country.

An estimated 83.1 per cent of all adults over 50 in London had been fully vaccinated by 20 June, while all other regions of England are above 90 per cent, according to NHS England.

Mr Khan warned that unless enough people come forward for their vaccination, it may not be possible to completely lift all lockdown restrictions next month.

He said: “Unless sufficient numbers of Londoners have the jab it makes it more likely that we won’t be able to fully reopen on July 19.

“I’m determined to have not only as many Londoners fully protected but for us to reopen on July 19.”

Key numbers and dates

A total of 75,963,777 jabs have been given in the UK up to 24 June, 43,877,861 of which were first doses.

The mass ‘grab a jab’ campaign comes as the UK recorded a further 15,810 Covid-19 cases as of 9am on Friday (25 June), which is up 50 per cent on the 10,476 new cases reported the week before.

The Government has set a target of 19 July for offering a first vaccine dose to all adults, which is the same date as the planned lifting of all lockdown restrictions in England.

How to find a drop-in site

All adults can book at one of the 1,700 vaccination centres, pharmacy or general practice sites across the country that are available through the NHS national booking service.

Vaccination centres are also available in convenient locations such as mosques, museums and football stadiums.

Details of the locations of the sites will be made available for communities across the country, so people can find the most convenient venue for them. People will be able to check the list of walk-in sites online.

Text invitations will appear as an alert from ‘NHSvaccine’ and include a web link to the NHS website to reserve an appointment.

People who cannot go online can call the service on 119 instead to book their jab.

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