Hundreds get booster jabs as Covid cases on Arran hit double figures

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Arran Medical Group held the first of two Covid booster vaccination sessions for people in the 50-years-or-over category last Sunday.

Hundreds of island residents attended the first session, which took place Arran High School, with a second to be held on Sunday November 14. Those who attended were also offered a seasonal flu vaccine at the same time.

Those in the previous age group, over-70s, who were unable to attend the previous sessions are invited to book for the next session.

Unpaid carers and people aged between 18 and 49, who are classed as ‘at risk’ or ‘clinically vulnerable’ are also eligible to attend the next session.

If you are in any of these categories, and it has been at least 24 weeks since your second vaccination, you can make an appointment by calling the surgery on 01770 600516 after 2pm on weekdays.

In a worrying development, Public Health Scotland’s latest available infection rates for Arran, which have consistently remained in single digits, reached double digits as October drew to an end. However, they remain relatively low in comparison to other areas in North Ayrshire.

Health bosses are urging everyone who is invited to receive a booster jab to have it done amid fears that health facilities will be overwhelmed if there is a spike in infection rates during winter.

NHS Ayrshire & Arran have already reported that the health service is under ‘extreme pressures’ and that delays for urgent and unscheduled care services may be experienced.

Health minister Humza Yousaf has also made it abundantly clear that ministers ‘will not hesitate’ to reimpose restrictions if more cases threaten to overwhelm Scotland’s NHS which is already under immense strain.

The ministers’ unambiguous words leave little doubt that Scotland could easily face a fresh wave of pandemic curbs and a potential lockdown if coronavirus cases escalate out of control this winter.

According to Public Health Scotland, as of November 1,  708,000 people in Scotland have received their booster jab whereas across the entire UK more than eight million people have had theirs.

Since immunity wanes every month, having a booster jab will help protect you and your loved ones this winter and reduce the spread of the virus.