New NHS walk-in clinic at Barnsley Metrodome helps 90,000 get their booster vaccine
The Barnsley NHS GP vaccination service announces a large-scale pop-up clinic to help vaccinate the estimated 90,000 across the borough who will be eligible for their booster before the end of December 2021.
The new pop-up vaccine clinic at Barnsley Metrodome will be open for walk-in booster appointments at 11am on Thursday 16 December 2021. It will be there for a time limited period until the end of December to help with the national announcement that all eligible adults aged 18 or over should be offered the booster vaccine by December 31 2021.
Boosters are now available to anyone aged 18 or over who had their 2nd vaccine three months ago or earlier. The clinic, based in the Metrodome arena, will be open 7 days a week, closing only on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, running from 10am with the last appointment at 8pm.
This new pop up clinic comes on top of the additional appointment slots and longer opening hours at other vaccine sites. The NHS is also prioritising anyone who is housebound and has been visiting people over recent weeks, including those living in a care home.
Andrea Parkin, chief nurse at Barnsley Healthcare Federation and heads up the vaccine service, said: “Getting your booster as soon as you’re eligible is really important. We’ve already had over 86,000 people in Barnsley have theirs, which is amazing. There are around 90,000 people across the borough who we’re now asking to come forward. If you are 18 and over and have had your 2nd dose at least three months ago, can get a walk-in slot down at the Metrodome before December 29th. Or book online www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine for other sites – the sooner you can get your booster the better.”
The waiting period of 15 minutes after each vaccination has now been removed, following approval from the national chief medical officers. This means that vaccines sites, which were restricted on the number of appointments they could offer to ensure people could maintain a safe distance whilst waiting, can now offer more slots.
Andrea: “Removing the 15 minute wait after the vaccines has now been approved by the chief medical officers and that will allow our teams to offer more appointments across all our sites. We’ve got a significant number of people to vaccinate in a short time which we’re geared up for but please expect some queues and dress for the weather.”
The vaccine team is asking anyone who has already booked an appointment elsewhere but is thinking of coming to the walk-in instead, to make sure they cancel their booked appointment by going online or calling 119 to help keep as many appointments open for others as possible.
Julia Burrows, Director of Public Health in Barnsley, said: “Scientists are very concerned about Omicron due to the speed with which it spreads, and because two doses do not appear to provide as much protection as we saw with previous variants. Thankfully, a booster dramatically improves this, and I encourage everyone who is eligible to get this extra level of protection."
Tim Wilson, CEO of BPL: “It’s just another great example of strong partnership work. The Metrodome has played key role throughout the pandemic initially as testing centre and now a pop-up vaccine site. Working with our partners for the local community is at the heart of what we do.
“I encourage as many eligible people as possible to get their booster vaccination. Strong immunity will likely prevent serious illness from COVID-19.”