National Vaccination Update
Of the 52.7 million adults in the UK – based on the Office of National Statistics data – over 28 million have now received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, including 95% of all over 60s. Over 2.2 million people have now had their second dose. Through the Government’s Vaccine Taskforce, the UK has secured early access to 457 million doses of 8 of the most promising vaccine candidates, most of which will come on stream following regulatory approval during the remainder of the year.
The Prime Minister reaffirmed yesterday that the UK is still on track to meet the target to vaccinate all over 50s by the 15th April and all adults by the end of July.
Local Vaccination Update
Pulborough Medical Group advise that all second dose appointments for this week are now full but more appointments will become available as soon as the next delivery is confirmed by NHS England at which point the surgery will contact all eligible patients. For more information, please visit the website here.
The Arundel Surgery website contains details of how any patients aged 50 and over – or have an underlying health condition – but have not yet had their first vaccine can make arrangements to book an appointment at the central site in Bognor Regis. For further information please see here.
Roadmap To Ease Lockdown – Step 1, Phase Two – 29th March
On Monday 29th March the second phase of Step One comes into effect when people will no longer be legally required to Stay at Home although many of the lockdown restrictions will remain in place. Government guidance states that people should continue to work from home where they can. People should continue to minimise travel, stay local wherever possible and should not be staying away from home overnight at this stage. Needless to say, the requirements to observe social distancing and wear face coverings remain unchanged.
Overseas travel remains banned other than for legally permitted reasons including work, volunteering, education, medical needs and to attend weddings or funerals. A £5,000 fine for anyone in England trying to travel abroad without good reason is due to come into force next week.
The good news, with Easter on the horizon, is that from 29th March outdoor gatherings of either 6 people or two households will be permitted, including in private gardens.
Also from 29th March, some further settings will be permitted to open, mostly outdoor facilities such as gyms and swimming pools, golf courses, driving ranges, tennis courts and riding centres. People can use these venues in a group of 6 people or with members of up to two households. Formally organised outdoor sport will return but can only include participants and not spectators. Weddings will be allowed to take place, attended by up to 15 people.
The latest Government comprehensive guidance on these changes can be found here: –
National lockdown: Stay at Home – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
The next major change in the lockdown restrictions will come with the introduction of Step 2 scheduled for 12th April when non-essential retail, personal care premises (hairdressers, nail salons etc.) and public buildings such as libraries and community centres all reopen. Most outdoors settings will also re-open and hospitality venues will be allowed to serve customers outside.
Please remember though, that as things currently stand, the ability to meet indoors socially with anyone other than members of your own household or support bubble does not apply until we reach Step 3 on 17th May when the “rule of 6” or 2 households indoors is scheduled to be re-introduced.
We shall provide further details of these remaining stages of the Roadmap nearer to the time in question.
Keep well and stay safe and if you require help with shopping or prescriptions please contact
Fr. Peter Mallinson (Bury) 839057 or Ken & Diana Rowsell (West Burton) 831475