We're nearly there! Just 7,000 Covid jabs to go before Northamptonshire hits its target

Massive 128,137 shots in the arm have already been delivered during county's vaccine roll-out

Northamptonshire will have shot past its target of delivering Covid jabs to 135,000 people by Sunday.

Official figures released today showed 128,137 had already received a first dose of the precious vaccine by last weekend.

Just over 8,500 out of an estimated 37,716 in the 70-74 year-olds age group remained to be seen ahead of Boris Johnson's target set last month of vaccinating 15 million people in the top four priority groups of most at risk people by mid-February.

Just one of the 128,000-plus recipients of a first Covid-19 jab at Northamptonshire's vaccination centre

NHS staff and volunteers at Northamptonshire’s vaccination centres had been delivering jabs at a rate of more than 20,000 a week over the last month to the elderly, vulnerable and health workers.

Yet the total number of vaccinations given over the last seven days of the reporting period was in excess of 30,000 as the county’s mass vaccination centre in Northampton got into top gear with nearly 1,500 people a day passing through.

Today’s figures also showed a heartening level of people taking up offers to be vaccinated:

■ 24,758 aged between 75 and 79 have received a first dose, which is actually 450 MORE than the estimated population of 24,302.

Chris Pallot is leading the 'titanic effort' to roll out the vaccine across Northamptonshire

■ 30,685 over-80s out of an estimated 32,724 population have received a first dose, around 94 per cent.

■ 7,608 of those over-80s — nearly a quarter — have already been given a second dose.

■ 43,769 healthcare workers have received a first dose.

■ 128.137 first doses have been given compared to 96,905 seven days earlier.

■ 10,053 people have had both doses of the,vaccine, including 2,253 healthcare workers.

Delivery started with the over-80s and healthcare workers just before Christmas and was then extended to the over-75s and, finally, the over-70s.

Earlier this week, the Government issued an appeal to those in the over-70s age group who had not yet been contacted about vaccination to get in touch with their local or national NHS by clicking online HERE or dialling 119.

Ahead of last month's opening of the Moulton Park centre, Chris Pallot, director of the Northampton vaccination centre programme, admitted that rolling out the vaccination programme in Northamptonshire via a network of primary care hubs and the mass vaccination centre has been a titanic effort

He said: "It's a huge privilege to be a part of this because I, like everyone else, have completely had enough in lockdown. To put a light at the end of the tunnel is a great privilege. It has been humbling to see how many hands have gone up to help.

"We do know this vaccine will stop people becoming very sick and that is the most important thing. In time, this is our way towards the end of this terrible journey.

" We’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved – in particular the staff and volunteers who will be running the service. Everyone has come together to join in with this titanic effort."