Enjoy the lockdown lifting safely: Dr David Crichton

Today is the day the nation is released from most of the coronavirus restrictions that we’ve been under for nearly 18 months. As the country opens up further, I would encourage you to be mindful of staying safe as infection rates hit their highest, they’ve been in Doncaster throughout the whole pandemic.

One of the most important things you can do to protect your health this summer is to join the majority of people in Doncaster and have both COVID-19 vaccinations. As each days passes there is more and more evidence to show how much the jabs protect you from death, hospitalisations and reducing your risk of experiencing complications and long COVID. It even reduced your chances of being infected and passing it on to others.

Across Doncaster, we’ve had fantastic uptake of the vaccinations but there are still people, some very vulnerable elderly people who haven’t come forward for their jabs yet. These individuals are the ones most at risk from the virus alongside the clinically vulnerable and with the country set to unlock and with infection rates rising, it’s even more important that unvaccinated people are protected as they risk becoming seriously ill should they catch the virus.

Please, if you know someone who hasn’t yet had their vaccination or are overdue a second dose, encourage them to come forward and visit one of the many drop-in sessions we are running across the borough to get jabbed. If you or someone you know initially declined the vaccine but would now like to have it, it’s never too late and you can book quickly and easily online via the NHS website or you can call 119.

The government recommends a gap between your two doses of 8 weeks for all adults over 18yrs, as this provides the best immunity from the vaccine, this will also mean as many younger people as possible get double jabbed before schools, colleges and universities go back after the summer.

If you are a university student home for the summer, you are welcome to come and get your vaccinations in Doncaster – it doesn’t matter if you are not registered with a Doncaster GP, in fact you don’t have to be registered with a surgery at all to get a jab.

As restrictions are lifted today, please continue to take precautions to limit your chances of catching the virus by washing your hands regularly, wearing a face mask in crowded areas and keeping some distance between you and other people where possible.

Please remember to help limit the spread of COVID-19 by being mindful of the symptoms and self-isolating and if you are concerned you have the infection, get a PCR test.

For more information about the vaccination programme please visit https://www.doncasterccg.nhs.uk/covid-19-vaccine/.