Burton Latimer man's second jab despair as county clinics out of AstraZeneca vaccine
People who need the AstraZeneca jab have discovered the county is out
A Burton Latimer man is desperate to have his second Covid-19 vaccination - but is unable to grab a jab in Northamptonshire two weeks after he was reminded by the NHS.
Paul Temple was aware that he needed to get his second AstraZeneca dose after he received his first one in June, and after being called by health workers went online to book a slot.
Since then he has been searching but been unable to find any clinics in Northamptonshire that stock the correct vaccine - the nearest place from his home is a 46-mile round trip away in Rugby.
The 46-year-old sales rep is eager to get fully vaccinated as he cares for his parents who are in their 70s and his grandparents who are in their 90s and shielding.
He said: "There is nowhere in Northamptonshire to get my second jab. I go on the website and the nearest place is Leicester or Bedford or Rugby.
"Every day I go on the grab a jab and there's nothing. I called 119 and they said for me to go on the grab a jab website. They told me that it was still fine to have it done."
Mr Temple was due to have his second vaccination of the AstraZeneca vaccine in August. He cancelled one appointment but wanted to re-book for the Moulton Park vaccination centre so he could be driven home after the jab, in case he had a reaction and was unable to drive.
He said: "My dad's driven each one of the family to the centre in case of a reaction and I drove my dad to the centre.
"I'm not an anti-vaxxer. I want it. Two weeks ago the NHS phoned me to say I hadn't had my jab. They said 'you are on my list' and I said I want to get it done locally. They said just keep checking.
"We have the highest rates of Covid in the country. Is there a stock issue? Is it because so many people want the jab?
"No-one would travel out of county to get a flu jab. What do the people of Rugby think about us coming over to take their jabs?
"If it was in Kettering or Wellingborough I could drive there but now there's issues with fuel too. Do I drive over and then not have fuel for work or to look after my grandparents?"
Patients have been told they can find a grab a jab service by entering their postcode to find their nearest walk-in coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccination site. They can also book via the NHS website.
Mr Temple would have to travel 23 miles to Woodside Park in Rugby to get his second vaccination - and 23 miles back.
Today (Tuesday, October 5) none of the Northamptonshire centres were offering Moderna first or second doses, or AstraZeneca first or second doses.
Pfizer vaccines are available at Oakley Pharmacy, Oakley Vale, and Mr Pickfords in Spencer Court, Corby, and Ramgarhia Sikh Temple (NHA Pharmacy) Cromwell Street, Northampton, for anyone aged 16 and over.
The Oxford AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine was administered during the first phase of the Covid-19 vaccine programme only to those aged 40 and over. Only those who received a first dose of AZ vaccine are eligible to receive it as a second dose, with some rare exceptions for clinical reasons.
All vaccines (both first and second doses) administered to those aged 39 and below are either Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, and only Pfizer is approved by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) for those aged 17 and under.
Availability of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine in Northamptonshire is now fairly limited compared with other vaccine types as there are few people remaining in our county who still need it.
Anna Dorothy, deputy director of the Northamptonshire Covid-19 Vaccination Programme, said: “Anyone who is eligible for a first or second dose of the Pfizer vaccine can either book an appointment by visiting the NHS website or calling 119, or going along to a local drop-in session.
"Appointments for the Moderna vaccine are available to book now at our vaccination centre in Moulton Park via the NHS website or 119.
"We are expecting fresh stocks of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine to arrive in the county next week so anyone due a second dose should check our local website at http://www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/covidvaccine nearer the time to find a drop-in session near them.”
Booster doses are now being offered by appointment only to people aged 50 and over, those at higher risk from coronavirus and frontline health and care workers.
Members of the public who are eligible can book their appointment via the NHS website / 119 or via their GP when they are invited to do so.
Last week, Kettering's Covid rate had rocketed with raw data showing the district had a seven-day case rate of 988 per 100,000 people, three times higher than the England average of 336.
The county's director of public health Lucy Wightman said: “Kettering’s Covid-19 cases are in the main from community transmission as the majority of national restrictions have been lifted and more household mixing is taking place."
She added: "Despite the lifting of national restrictions there are still important and very simple behaviours Kettering residents and others in Northamptonshire can follow to help play their part in stemming onward transmission of Covid-19.
"Take regular twice weekly LFD tests, which are available to pick up at most pharmacies, or if you have symptoms a PCR test. Wear face coverings in crowded areas and wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds.
"And when eligible take up the offer of a vaccination, second vaccination, or booster as vaccination remains the single biggest factor in reducing the risk of death and serious illness from Covid-19.”
Latest figures show that the seven-day case rate had dropped to 860 per 100,000 people in Kettering, which still the highest rate in the country.
A spokesman for Northamptonshire Local Resilience Forum said: "All the current drop-in availability can be found on our local website here and you’ll see there are plenty of sessions this week www.northamptonshire.gov.uk/coronavirus-updates/Pages/coronavirus-vaccination-in-northamptonshire.aspx"Booked appointments are still widely available in addition to the drop-ins, via the NHS national booking service website: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/book-or-manage-a-1st-or-2nd-dose-of-the-coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination/."