Thousands of Harrogate 12 to 15-year-olds are still waiting for Covid jab according to new figures

New figures show Harrogate is languishing in the bottom half of the national league table when it comes to the Covid vaccine rollout for youngsters.

Thursday, 28th October 2021, 3:59 pm
Updated Thursday, 28th October 2021, 4:04 pm
Importance of vaccinations - The Harrogate district currently ranks 213th out of 347 areas in England and Scotland for the vaccination rates of 12 to 15-year-olds.

Although a fall in the district’s infection rate this week has reduced pressure for more action, the new data shows that some Harrogate parents’ fears that most pupils have yet to be jabbed appears to be real.

The new data, drawn up by JPIMedia’s Data & Investigations team from official Government sources for every council in England and Scotland, shows the proportion of 12 to 15-year-olds to have received the Covid vaccine so far standing at 14.2%, as of October 17.

Sign up to our daily Harrogate Advertiser Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

In total, 1,135 youngsters of that age group had been jabbed by that date out of an estimated 8,010.

By that count, the Harrogate district currently ranks 213th out of 347 areas in total, though the figures show it is in line with the Yorkshire

average.

The results do little to ease concern from North Yorkshire’s health leaders that Harrogate’s unwanted status as a Covid ‘hotspot’ in recent weeks has been driven largely by the return to classrooms in September.

In reaction to what is a national problem, the Government is encouraging the take-up of the jab among secondary school pupils, something supported locally.

Amanda Bloor, accountable officer for NHS North Yorkshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “The Covid vaccination programme is now available across North Yorkshire to everyone 12 years and older, and the programme for young members of the community is being rolled out in our schools.

“Vaccination is safe and effective, and it is the best way of keeping ourselves and loved ones safe.”

The Government’s push to ensure older age groups get a booster jab in time for winter means the Great Yorkshire Showground will reopen as a coronavirus vaccination centre in December temporarily.

A spokesperson for NHS North Yorkshire CCG said: “Plans are in place to run pop-up Covid vaccination clinics at the Yorkshire Showground at the beginning of December for two weeks, as this is when we are anticipating a peak in the number of patients eligible to receive their booster jabs.”

Until then, patients over 50 eligible for their booster dose can still book an appointment at an alternative vaccination centre via the NHS National Booking Service.

Sixteen to 17-year-olds are allowed to drop in at pop-up clinics or book a vaccination on the national NHS booking service.

As the NHS continues to work with schools on the jab rollout, it has also said parents can now make bookings online for their 12 to 15-year old children to get vaccinated outside of their secondary school at other available vaccination sites.

These can be booked via the national booking service - www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/

Harrogate’s Covid figures: Infection rates/vaccination rates

The Harrogate district’s weekly infection rate had fallen to 573 cases per 100,000 people as of Wednesday, October 27 after reaching record levels of 733 last month according to Public Health England.

This mirrors a trend of falling rates nationally, though the Government has said it is too early to draw any firm conclusions.

Elsewhere, there were 19 Covid patients being treated at Harrogate hospital on Monday.

The hospital last reported a Covid-related death on October 22, when its death toll since the pandemic began rose to 193.

In terms of vaccination, the figures show a total of 130,232 people in the Harrogate district have received their first vaccine dose and 121,915 people their second.

That equates to 83% and 77% of the population respectively.

According to data provided by JPIMedia’s Data & Investigations team Harrogate’s vaccination rate of just of 14.2% for 12 to 15-year-olds lies somewhere between the worst performer in England and Scotland (Barking and Dagenham at 4%) and the best (Dumfries and Galloway at 63%).

But the figures are more encouraging in terms of 16 to 17-year-olds, showing that 66.2% of that age group in Harrogate have received a vaccine, compared with 58.4% across England.