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Minister lends a hand for healthcare staff vaccinations

West Suffolk healthcare staff receiving their life-saving Covid-19 vaccination have today been helped out by an unusual volunteer: health minister Jo Churchill.

The Bury St Edmunds constituency MP visited a pop-up clinic at West Suffolk Hospital, and spent time working as a volunteer steward supporting the vaccination programme.

A floor of an office block on the hospital site was converted into a staff vaccination hub in January for the first round of vaccination doses and this week staff began to receive second dose injections, which help ensure maximum protection against Covid-19.

The hospital hub is focused on vaccinations for local health and care staff including hospital and community care staff, ambulance crews, dentists, opticians, care home staff and council staff dealing with those most at risk from the virus. It administered more than 16,000 vaccinations in the first round.

Mrs Churchill said: "I was incredibly impressed with the vaccination hub. It's a very efficient but still very caring approach, and there is a great team of volunteers supporting the NHS staff. 

"Getting vaccinated is extremely important in tackling Covid-19,  and I want to say thank you to everyone at West Suffolk Hospital - and at the dozens of vaccination centres across Suffolk - for the great work they are doing to protect us all."

West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Stephen Dunn said: "I am extremely proud of how our teams have reacted throughout the pandemic, both in treating patients with Covid-19 and more recently with supporting the vaccine programme.

"We have had brilliant support from the public following social distancing rules. By sticking to the rules and getting vaccinated when it is your turn, we can all keep protecting each other."

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Jo Churchill meets members of our vaccination team

Jo Churchill meets members of our vaccination team