Beverley Vaccination Centre - Race against time

Thu 4th February 2021
Beverley Vaccination Centre 82 Medium Jpg

Beverley Racecourse has joined in the fight against the Coronavirus after the NHS announced they were opening a vaccination centre.

It opened to Beverley and Market Weighton catchment for residents on January 6 and covers Beverley and Market Weighton with an overall patient catchment of circa 50,000. 

With the assistance of the community and the ease of access and parking at the race course, Taxi Drivers, Beverley Community Lift and a host of volunteers have come together to help the most vulnerable get their injections.

The racecourse became involved in the vaccination centre scheme when it was approached by a local doctor, Dr Colin Garnham on the task force for setting up a local network centre. The main rationale in question was whether the racecourse could offer any facilities to accommodate the measures.

The ideal centre needed to be accessible within the region with good road links, onsite parking and enough space to be able to welcome lots of people at the same time in a safe and ordered fashion. It also needed to be able to operate
7 days a week for the foreseeable future, and Beverley Racecourse fitted the bill perfectly.

With the government attempting to ramp up the Covid-19 rollout for vaccinations, the size and scale of Beverley Racecourse will help efforts to cater for the vaccination demand. 

Needing a quick turnaround to cater for the large rollout of vaccines, the team at the racecourse had some adjustments to make but luckily the stand alone facility is easy to adapt.

The flooring was changed from carpet to vinyl to ensure thorough cleaning and the highest hygiene standards, and most of the equipment needed on site.

Sally Iggulden, CEO Beverley Race Course, said: ““We are so pleased to be able to host a vaccination centre at the racecourse and hope that this really will see an end to the restrictions placed on everyday life by this pandemic.”

“It has been thoroughly heart-warming to see people back at the racecourse, albeit for very different reasons than usual. The NHS staff and the volunteers have been truly wonderful, allowing for an efficient procedure which will hopefully see many thousands protected in our local community”.

Initially the racecourse is anticipated to be operational as a vaccination centre for around 12 weeks, but this could be extended depending on how the vaccination rollout continues. The centre has already completed 10% of the
vaccinations and all the care homes have been vaccinated.

The vaccination centre is located in the Annual Badgeholders Building, and free parking is available in the Owners and Trainers Car Park, located directly off York Road. Ensure you follow all directions and safety information to ensure a
smooth and safe operation. Clinical Director, Dr Colin Garnham, says: “Progress is good for the Beverley and District with fantastic attendance records to date. If people do not show up, then the vaccination still needs to be used and
volunteers are given their injection earlier to ensure no waste of the vaccine”.

The service is being operated by the NHS centrally, so you will be notified by the NHS when to get your vaccination. Efforts are being made to lay on transport. Residents are being prioritised based on medical information and not just age, so it is important to be patient as you can as it may take some time before you are notified. Currently patients are visiting from the local area, but there is potential to open to people from further afield.

Dr Garnham is optimistic that as long as supplies continue to arrive, the timeline in which to have everyone vaccinated will be
achieved. He said: “The vaccination centre is well organised, slick, and is a credit to everyone involved”.

Initially when the Dr Garnham received the criteria to open a vaccination centre to cover the area, a number of options were available. The racecourse, with the ease of transformations, ease of access and availability, has proved to be the right decision with the ideal location.

Local surgeries are not organising the vaccination centre so please do not contact them as they are unlikely to have
information and the phone lines are increasingly busy.

Keep to the guidelines:
Stay Home,
Save lives.

Just Beverley