People under 50 have struggled to book their coronavirus vaccinations in Plymouth this morning – but more slots have now been made available.
The start of “Phase 2” of the vaccination programme – which involves offering vaccines to healthy adults aged over 45 – came after the Government met its target of offering the vaccine to all those in the highest risk groups.
Anyone in the age bracket has now been invited to book their appointments, but many in Plymouth were left baffled by the locations offered to them.
One woman, who was trying to book jabs for herself and her husband, explained that while she was “really happy to get through and book”, it was a “bit of a nightmare”.
She said that not only did it take her an hour with the “website crashing every five seconds”, there were no available appointments in Plymouth.
The nearest appointment given to her was the Royal Cornwall Showground in Wadebridge.
You can stay up to date on the top news near you with PlymouthLive’s FREE newsletters – enter your email address at the top of the page
“I suppose it is understandable when there must have been such a high traffic rate trying to book as soon as it opened this morning,” she said.
“I am a little shocked I have to travel over 30 miles, as this was the nearest vaccination centre that was shown on the site.
“What if somebody cannot drive or is unable to travel far?”
Others reported similar problems this morning, but Derriford Hospital has confirmed that Home Park has “since opened additional capacity onto the booking system to reflect the announcement of over 45s”.
People can book appointments by calling 119 or using the National Booking Service online.
A spokesperson for NHS Devon said: “We are delighted to be able to start offering coronavirus vaccinations to the next cohort of people – those aged 45 and above. People in this group can book an appointment via the National Booking Service or by calling 119.
“New appointments are being regularly added so please keep checking back on the national website over the next few days and slots have just been added for Home Park in Plymouth.
“Please do not contact your GP practice about an appointment – they will contact you when they are able to book you in.”
How to get a Covid vaccine if you are under 50
Anyone in England over the age of 45 can now book themselves in for a Covid vaccine after the most vulnerable across the country were all offered a jab.
Updating their booking site on Tuesday, the NHS said:
You need to:
- have 2 doses of the coronavirus vaccine at 2 appointments
- book both appointments at the same time
- get the 2nd dose 11 to 12 weeks after getting your 1st dose
If you’ve had a positive Covid-19 test, you should wait four weeks from the date you had the test before you book an appointment.
If you’re under 30, you will not be offered appointments for the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. There may be fewer appointments available or you may have to travel further.
To book your appointment visit the NHS website by following this link.