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Lining up for Thorntree's Covid jab jamboree

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A photo of someone a coronavirus vaccine

When you get the call - get the jab!

That's the message from Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston and local health chiefs as the town's Covid-19 vaccination programme gathers pace.

Mayor Preston called in at Thorntree Surgery to see how the life-saving jabs are being delivered there as part of the Central Middlesbrough Primary Care Network.

The surgery's vaccination operation runs from 8am to 8pm daily, with a 20-strong team including vaccinators, healthcare assistants, marshals and admin staff helping to deliver as many as 450 first doses in a day.

Team members are all tested every day to minimise any risk of passing the virus to anyone visiting the surgery.

During his visit Mayor Preston met Primary Care Network Clinical Director Doctor Vaishali Nanda as she welcomed a steady stream of patients all keen to get their first jab.

Among them was 60-year-old Janet Banks from Beechwood who was the 7,000th recipient of the vaccine this month.

Janet said: "I was very tired afterwards and had a slight ache in my arm, but I'm feeling fine now.

"I'd recommend anyone who's eligible to get it as soon as it's offered - that's the only way we can beat this virus."

Dr Nanda said: "We've got a very slick process here and the feedback from patients has been very good.

"My message to people is that vaccination is a great protection against this dreadful illness, so I'd urge them to please keep their appointment as we do not want to waste any vaccine."

Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: "It's been amazing to see people like Janet turning up to get the jab and play their part in turning the on this dreadful disease.

"The numbers here are really impressive and that's down to great planning and organisation - and that's happening across Middlesbrough and up and down the country as millions of people get themselves protected against coronavirus.

"The vaccination is safe and effective, and it really is the way out of the pandemic for all of us.

"When you get the call, please make sure you attend the appointment and help us keep up the momentum."

For more information on the Covid-19 vaccine, and who is currently eligible to receive it, visit the NHS website.