It’s fantastic to have heard this week that over 32 million people have now had their first coronavirus vaccination dose (based on government figures). The successful vaccination rollout continues across Croydon, and I urge everyone who is eligible to get their vaccine to do so.
Even more people are now eligible to receive their first dose. As of last Tuesday, anyone aged 45 or older on 30 March 2021 can now book their first dose of the vaccine, with their second 11 or 12 weeks later.
The NHS will let you know when it’s your turn for your first dose, which can take place at larger vaccination centres, pharmacies and some hospitals or GP surgeries. Alternatively, if you are 45 or above, or are eligible for another reason, you do not need to wait and can instead book your appointment online via the NHS website.
Since we reached the latest part of the government’s roadmap out of lockdown on Monday, when non-essential retail opened again, it’s been so nice to see people out and about, going to the shops and enjoying pub gardens safely.
In particular, it’s been great to see people supporting local businesses while respecting the Covid-19 measures they have in place. If you’ve not ventured out yet, remember you can still support local businesses by shopping with them online. More information is available via our Love Croydon, shop local initiative.
Coronavirus levels have significantly fallen since the peak in January, and I want to thank Croydon residents and businesses for doing their bit in helping to reduce this. But we need to all continue following the rules. Remember – hands, face, space, fresh air.
It is also important to remember that, unless they are in your support bubble, you can still only meet outdoors with other people – either up to six people from any household, or two households of any size.
We don’t want to stop the progress everyone has made up to this point, and the surge testing taking place in some other London boroughs underlines the ongoing risk posed by Covid-19.
While there is currently no surge testing taking place in Croydon, you can also play your part in tackling the virus by getting tested – whether you have symptoms or not.
If you show symptoms of having coronavirus – such as a persistent new headache, a high temperature or a loss of sense of smell – then make sure you get a PCR test as soon as possible, which is then sent to a laboratory for results. Aside from going to get tested, you should stay at home and have no visitors.
Even if you have no symptoms, 1 in 3 of you could still have coronavirus and risk passing it to people you care about. That’s why it’s important that as many as people as possible get a regular, free, rapid lateral flow test twice a week.
There are several ways to do this, including ordering your test kits by post. For more information, visit Croydon Council website’s rapid lateral flow testing pages.
Thank you for all your support in helping to keep our borough safe,
Croydon’s director of public health