An isle GP says vaccinations are ‘key’ to making sure people can get on with life despite the increase in covid positive rates for Thanet.
Dr Ash Peshen, who leads Thanet’s GP covid vaccination clinics, is urging those not already jabbed to attend walk-in clinics at Saga this Friday and Saturday.
The clinics are for anyone aged 16 and over for their first jab and also second jabs for those who had their first vaccination eight or more weeks ago. The vaccinations will be Pfizer.
The walk-in clinics run from 8am to 5.30pm on both days (September 3-4).
Dr Peshen said: “We have to jab as many people as possible and then learn to live with it. We are slowly moving into the endemic phase. A lot will now depend on the further vaccine uptake as this will help us in managing not only the infection rate but also how many people end up in hospital. So, the key is vaccinations.
“Life has to go on. I have seen so much impact on mental health in the lockdowns, it just breaks my heart. Get the jab and let’s get on with life.”
Endemic means the virus will not disappear but enough people will gain immune protection from vaccination and from natural infection for there to be less transmission, hospitalisations and deaths.
Predictions for the endemic stage come from a variety of medical research including a survey carried out by the journal Nature of more than 100 immunologists, infectious disease researchers, and virologists working on SARS-CoV-2.
The current picture in Thanet
Positive case rates for Thanet, as of August 26, stood at 419.2 per 100,000, The England rate is 315.2. Available data does not show how many of those people testing positive have already had vaccinations.
The rate for Thanet was one of the lowest in the country at the start of June with less than 10 positive cases per 100,000 but this has been climbing through July and August, although a slight downturn is evident once again.
Vaccination rates for Thanet stand at 99,630 (83.7%) for first dose and 92,049 (77.3%) for second doses although the number of people being jabbed per day has slowed down.
Admissions to East Kent hospitals (Ashford, Margate and Canterbury) have also seen a slight rise with 32 people in hospital for covid as of August 24 and five of those people being on mechanical ventilation. On June 1, there was one patient in East Kent hospitals and for a period mid-month there were no covid in-patients being treated by the hospital trust but this began to rise in July and August.
From April 1 to May 15 the hospital trust for east Kent had no patients in ventilation beds, one person was recorded on May 16 but this then reverts to zero until May 27 with two patients needing ventilation.
Throughout June the number stood at zero but ventilation was required through July and August for a small number of patients.
From mid-May to early July there were no covid-related deaths recorded in Thanet. Since July 9 to August 13 there were three recorded deaths within 28 days of a positive covid test. Again, government data does not show whether those affected were vaccinated or not. The number of people lost to covid or covid-related causes in Thanet is 512.
Government figures show that hospitals are seeing a rise in unvaccinated young adults admitted with COVID-19. A fifth of COVID-19 hospital admissions in England are aged 18 to 34 – 4 times higher than at the peak in the winter of 2020.
Currently the highest covid positive rates in England are being experienced in the South West. Additional support has been deployed to local authorities in Cornwall, the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Plymouth and Torbay.
- logistical support to maximise vaccine and testing uptake
- further help for local public health campaigns
- temporary use of face coverings in communal areas outside classrooms in secondary schools and colleges
- increased surveillance using multiple methods to monitor the situation
The additional support is in place for 5 weeks as of last week.
Data from Public Health England (PHE) shows COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective against hospitalisation from the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant, the dominant strain in the UK. The analysis shows the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 96% effective and the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is 92% effective against hospitalisation after 2 doses.
In all age groups the odds of experiencing symptoms for more than 28 days after post-vaccination infection were approximately halved by having two vaccinations.
Currently vaccinations are being offered to all those aged 16 and over and 12 to 15-year-olds with specific underlying health conditions that put them at risk of serious Covid-19 or who are living with people who are immunosuppressed.
Find out how to get your vaccination at https://www.kentandmedwayccg.nhs.uk/your-health/coronavirus/covid19vaccine