Campaign launches to encourage young people to ‘Get the Jab Done’

Billboards, lamppost wraps, posters and flyers will be popping up across our area over the next few days, urging young people to the ‘Get the Jab Done’. The campaign is underpinned by our webpage, which lists up-to-date information about walk-in vaccination clinics throughout our area where no appointment is needed.

The campaign is going live ahead of the government’s target to offer everyone aged 18 an over a vaccine by Sunday 25 July. Young people are generally positive about having the vaccine, but we know they need a different approach.

Clare Armour, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Vaccination Programme Lead, said: “We’re working at making it as easy as possible for people to have their vaccine in convenient locations and at times that fit around their work and their lives.

“Vaccinated people are far less likely to get COVID-19 with symptoms and pass it on to others. Even if you are younger, you can still get seriously ill from COVID, including longer lasting symptoms from 'Long COVID', like severe fatigue. Getting vaccinated will help us all get life back to normal by reducing the spread of the virus and protecting our communities, families and friends.”

A full list of walk-in clinics can be found on the Healthier Together website or Alternatively, an appointment can be made on the National Booking Service or by calling 119.

One million Covid-19 jabs in arms

Six months into the Covid-19 vaccination programme, the local NHS in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire (BNSSG) has reached the milestone of providing more than one million vaccinations to people in the area.

As of Thursday 17 June, 1,019,712 vaccinations have been given across BNSSG, meaning 76% have received at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

The landmark has been reached as vaccinations open up to the entire adult population with people over the age of 18, now invited to book vaccinations as soon as possible through the national booking system.

Local NHS leaders have praised the efforts of health professionals, volunteers and communities across the area for their combined efforts to help reach this milestone, but are encouraging more people to come forward for the best protection against the virus.

Tim Whittlestone, Clinical Lead for the area’s Covid-19 vaccination programme, said:

“Reaching a million vaccinations is a huge achievement for everyone involved in our vaccination programme, and a moment to reflect upon what has been accomplished.

“However, we know that many people still need to receive their Covid-19 vaccine in order to get the best protection against the virus.

“Rising cases of the Delta variant across the area means it is of even greater importance for people to book their first jabs and - for those eligible - to return for their second jab for the most effective protection.

“We know the last 15 months have been really difficult for everyone, but vaccinations really are the light at the end of the tunnel. If you’re eligible and haven’t yet had your vaccination, please book an appointment as soon as you can.”

Anyone aged 18 and over is now able to book their vaccination through the national booking system.

People who cannot go online can call the service on 119 instead to book their jab.

Those aged 39 and under and pregnant women will be offered the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine in line with updated national guidance.

If you had your first vaccine through a GP-led service, they will be in contact with you to arrange your second vaccine appointment.

New large-scale ‘Vaccination Centre @ UWE Bristol’ opens

On 7 July 2021, the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire (BNSSG) Vaccination Programme will open a new large scale Vaccination Centre at the Conference and Exhibition Centre on UWE Bristol’s Frenchay Campus. The ‘Vaccination Centre @ UWE Bristol’ will have a capacity of up to 1,000 vaccinations a day and makes use of the decommissioned NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol facilities.

The Vaccination Centre @ UWE Bristol will sit alongside our existing GP, community pharmacy and Ashton Gate vaccination sites. It will increase vaccination capacity across BNSSG as we race to protect as many people as possible from the Delta variant of COVID-19 before any planned easing of Lockdown. It will also allow us to bring forward more vital second dose vaccinations from 12 weeks for those eligible, to offer people in our region the best possible protection against hospitalisation from COVID-19.

The Centre has a large free car park and is easily accessible by car from much of BNSSG, while the UWE Bristol Campus is a 15 minute bus journey from central Bristol.

Dr Tim Whittlestone, Clinical Lead for BNSSG Vaccination Programme, said: “Although we are making good progress in BNSSG, we still have hundreds of thousands of first and second dose vaccinations to give. The Vaccination Centre @ UWE Bristol will increase our capacity to ensure we reach the deadline of offering all adults a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine before 25 July.

“If you have been putting off booking your appointment, please don’t delay. We have lots of first dose vaccination capacity at the moment on the National Booking System, in GP clinics and at walk-in centres. We’re working hard to make it as easy as possible for everyone in our region to take up the offer of a vaccination by offering as many options as possible. Please book your appointment, now.”

Professor Steve West, UWE Bristol Vice-Chancellor, said: “We are proud to be able to help the regional and national effort to get people vaccinated so that, as a country, we can be in a far stronger position for the planned easing of lockdown. The University enjoys an extensive relationship with the regional NHS, and we place great value on being part of the community and making a difference.”

Our latest COVID-19 vaccination walk-in clinics

To find information on upcoming walk-in clinics across the area and how to book your Covid-19 vaccination, please visit our new bookings page which provides information on all upcoming walk-in clinics as well as a link to the National Booking System.

Ashton Gate Walk-In NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Clinic

Following the success of the first drop-in COVID-19 vaccination clinic, Ashton Gate vaccination centre will be running a series of drop-in clinics each day on the following dates:

  • Monday 14 June to Friday 18 June, 8am – 7pm

The clinics will use the AstraZeneca vaccine and are open to anyone over 40 if you haven’t had your first dose, or, if your first dose of AstraZeneca was 8 weeks ago or more.

The new variant of the Covid-19 virus spreads more easily. The more people that have the Covid-19 vaccine, the sooner our community can get back to normal life. The clinics are being held to help provide more options for vaccination for local people, improve access to the vaccine and provide the best protection to a greater number of people.

For more information about the local vaccination programme, visit our vaccination pages. 

Hartcliffe Walk-In NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Clinic

This Friday 28 May 2021, we are holding a walk-in Covid-19 Vaccination Clinic in Hartcliffe, Bristol, in the @Symes Community Building, next to Morrisons. Local people can drop-in and have their vaccination while they shop.

  • 9am-12pm: Over 40s Walk-In Clinic - St John’s Ambulance NHS mobile clinic in the Morrisons Hartcliffe Car Park, BS13 0BE
  • 12pm-6pm: All ages Walk-In Clinic in the @Symes Community Building, BS13 0BE

The Hartcliffe area does not have as many local accessible vaccination sites as some other areas in Bristol, especially for those who do not have access to transport.

We’re hosting the NHS run Walk-In vaccine clinic to make it easy for the local community to have the vaccine.

The clinics are being held in partnership with the local GP surgery, Hartcliffe Health Centre.

Our team of NHS Vaccine Coaches and Bristol City Council Community Engagement Team will be in the Morrisons car park from 9am-12pm to answer any questions you may have.

The new variant of the Covid-19 virus spreads more easily. The more people that have the Covid-19 vaccine, the sooner our community can get back to normal life.

  • Location of Walk-In Clinic: @Symes Community building, Peterson Avenue, Hartcliffe, BS13 0BE.
  • Location of Morrisons: Peterson Avenue, Hartcliffe, BS13 0BE.
  • For more information about the local vaccination programme, visit the Healthier Together website.


Public consultation on changes to hospital stroke services announced

Proposals to change the way hospital stroke services are organised and delivered in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire will be put to the public from 7 June, after the local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) today (1 June) made the decision to progress to public consultation.

The proposals for change – put together by a diverse range of people, including senior clinicians, staff and stroke survivors – are designed to ensure fewer stroke deaths every year and improve long-term health outcomes. Around 5 people a day experience a stroke in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire, and 1 in 50 of the total population live with the condition’s long-term impacts.

Drawing on the latest national clinical evidence, proposed changes include the creation of a single ‘Hyper-acute Stroke Unit’ at Bristol’s Southmead Hospital, bringing the area’s clinical expertise and specialist resources into one ‘centre of excellence’ as currently exists for heart care and major trauma.

Anyone in the area who experiences a stroke would be taken straight to Southmead Hospital by ambulance for emergency stroke care, rather than to their nearest hospital as is currently the case.

Travel analysis completed as part of the design phase shows Southmead as reachable from Bristol, North Somerset and south Gloucestershire locations within 45 minutes by ambulance, with 7 in 10 people just 30 minutes away.

Dr Chris Burton, Clinical Lead for the programme, said:

“We want everyone to have the best possible opportunity to survive and thrive after stroke, which is why we’re excited to test these proposals with the public.

“At the moment, people’s outcomes and experience vary depending on where they live and the time of day or night they have a stroke. Our proposals are designed to change that and ensure consistently high-quality emergency care for everyone - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

“Clinical evidence and service change examples from across the country show that when you bring specialist staff, equipment and resources together into a single centre like this, deaths are prevented and people’s long term outcomes are improved.

“We really want to hear what people think, and encourage everyone to have their say on the proposals during the consultation period.”

Key changes are also being proposed to ongoing hospital care after the emergency treatment phase, and inpatient rehabilitation support. For patients requiring further hospital care, the preferred option is for a single specialist stroke unit at Southmead, although the option of an additional smaller unit at the Bristol Royal Infirmary has also been put forward.

Proposed changes to inpatient rehabilitation services would see two specialist units provided – one on the Weston General Hospital site in North Somerset, and another in either Bristol or South Gloucestershire.

Dr Jon Hayes, Clinical Chair of the CCG, said:

“Stroke touches so many lives, so it’s great to be at the point of consulting with the public on changes designed to improve care and outcomes.

“This is the culmination of a huge amount of work, and I’d like to thank everyone involved to date - particularly the stroke survivors who have contributed their time so generously in shaping the proposals.

“We want to hear from as many people across the area as possible, and there will be a range of events taking place during the consultation period, with full details on how you can have your say.”

The consultation opens at 9am on Monday 7 June and is planned to run for 13 weeks, closing at 12pm on Friday 3 September. All the consultation information will be hosted on the stroke services pages.

NHS welcomes launch of new COVID-19 vaccination site and walk-in clinic at Boots Hartcliffe

A new community pharmacy vaccination site at Boots Hartcliffe at the Imperial Retail Park has begun providing COVID-19 vaccinations to Bristol residents. To mark the opening of the new site, the pharmacy team is holding a walk-in vaccination clinic for people aged 40 and over on Saturday 22 May. Local people will be able to drop in on the day, without an appointment, and receive their COVID-19 vaccination.

The addition of this new vaccination site will see the life-saving COVID-19 vaccine being offered in a convenient location for Hartcliffe residents, increasing options for people in South Bristol. Available appointments will appear on the National Booking System or can be booked by calling 119 for people to book when they are eligible.

Nick Sunderland, Programme Director for Vaccines at Boots, said: “Our pharmacy teams are hugely excited by the opportunity to help their local community by offering the COVID-19 vaccine instore.

We are incredibly proud to be supporting the NHS to deliver COVID-19 vaccinations – our stores are conveniently located and accessible. We look forward to welcoming patients over the coming days and weeks.”

Tim Whittlestone, Clinical Lead for the BNSSG COVID-19 Mass Vaccination Programme, said:

“We’re delighted to welcome the Boots Hartcliffe community pharmacy to our vaccination programme. The addition of this new vaccination site in South Bristol will help make the uptake of this life-saving vaccine as easy as possible for local residents. This new pharmacy site sits alongside 8 other community pharmacy sites, 19 GP-led clinics and the Ashton Gate Vaccination Centre.

“Pharmacy teams are experienced in supporting national vaccination programmes and will provide a safe and efficient service. Pharmacies are also a familiar sight on high streets and a place where people feel more at ease. We hope their inclusion will help more people feel confident to come forward and book their vaccinations.”

The Boots Hartcliffe pharmacy team will be providing a limited number of COVID-19 vaccination between 2-4pm on Saturday 22 May. Local people who are 40 years and over, or who are in priority cohort groups 1-10, can attend without an appointment and receive their first COVID-19 vaccination.

If vaccine supply on the day is used up, people attending will be directed to other booking options to receive their vaccination.

The new pharmacy site brings the total number of community pharmacy teams providing the COVID-19 vaccination in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire to nine. Other community pharmacy vaccination sites are listed below:

  • Bedminster Pharmacy (delivering vaccinations at Bedminster Methodist Church).
  • Superdrug in Broadmead, Bristol
  • Kellaway Pharmacy, Bristol
  • Locking Pharmacy, Weston-super-Mare
  • Sea Cadets, Weston-super-Mare
  • Billings Pharmacy, Kingswood
  • Ellacombe Pharmacy, Longwell Green (delivering vaccinations at Longwell Green Community Centre).
  • Boots Pharmacy, The Mall Cribbs Causeway

People eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine will be able to select a local pharmacy site through the national booking centre when vaccine supply is available.

It is not possible to get a vaccine at a community pharmacy or any other vaccination site without an appointment when attending outside the hours of the drop-in clinic.

For more information about the local vaccination programme, visit the Healthier Together website.


NHS leaders to consider stroke service change proposals

The NHS in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire will consider proposals for transforming stroke services across the area at a key meeting next week. The local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will review the proposals on 1 June, before deciding on whether to proceed to a public consultation on the changes.

The proposals are designed to ensure fewer stroke deaths and improved outcomes. They include changes to emergency treatment, ongoing hospital care and live-in rehabilitation services. A range of people including senior clinicians, stroke services staff and people with lived-experience of stroke have been involved in designing  the proposals, and will be present at the meeting to discuss them.

Dr Chris Burton, Clinical Lead for the Improving Stroke Services in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Programme, said:

“This is an exciting step in ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to survive and thrive after stroke.

"Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability in the UK, and 1 in 50 people in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire live with the condition’s long term impacts.

"We believe there’s a strong case for bringing our specialist stroke resources together to improve hospital care, and for greater investment in community support which we know aids long term recovery.

"A big thank you goes to everyone involved in shaping the proposals to date, including people who have experienced stroke themselves and our dedicated stroke services staff.”

If agreed at the CCG Governing Body meeting on 1 June 2021, a formal 12-week public consultation process would launch on 7 June, with accompanying publicity sharing all the details on how people can have their say.


Healthier Together partnership supports 'Stamp Out Racism' statement

Health and care leaders in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire have today signed up to the 'Stamp Out Racism' statement, following the recent racist attacks on Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees and Deputy Mayor Asher Craig. Speaking on behalf of the Partnership as its Executive Co-Chair and CEO of the area's Clinical Commissioning Group, Julia Ross, said:

"We stand together against racism and extend our support to Mayor Rees and Councillor Craig in the wake of these horrific attacks. The obligation to stamp out racism rests with us all. As a Healthier Together partnership, we will continue to speak out, and ensure our services, workplaces and communities are safe and inclusive."

The full 'Stamp Out Racism' statement is set out below.

Statement of support - Stamp Out Racism

The solidarity we show in standing against the racism that Marvin Rees and Asher Craig face will give hope to those who are facing racism across society. We see you and we stand with you.

For too long we have watched people from all walks of public life receive racist abuse, whether it be Premier League football players having monkey chants taunt them before they take a freekick, or having bananas thrown at them as they leave the pitch. We have watched actors, singers, presenters and politicians who have been singled out for racist abuse both online and in person. These attacks have a deep impact not only on those they are directed at but all those who watch and hear the vile abuse, especially children.

Racism is an inhumane and cruel form of abuse that for too long people of colour have had to endure quietly and on their own.

This statement of support is a message that we the undersigned will not stay quiet whilst those around us are singled out for racist abuse in 2021.

We speak to give comfort to those who feel alone in the struggle against racism, as a city we will stand up to racism in all its forms and speaking out publicly when we see racism take place does two things, it tells the perpetrators that their actions are grotesque and it tells those that are abused they are not alone.