WORCESTERSHIRE-wide efforts to ensure Covid vaccinations reached as many people as possible during the pandemic have been honoured with an NHS Parliamentary Award.
The Herefordshire and Worcestershire Covid-19 vaccination team has been awarded the prize for its tireless efforts during the pandemic to bring together different groups and organisations to reduce health inequalities and prevent ill-health
As regional winners, the team will now go head-to-head with other winners from across the country for the chance to win the national award in a ceremony in the House of Commons on July 6.
The team includes workers from the NHS, councils, general practice, the voluntary and community sector, and other organisations.
During the pandemic, the partnership addressed inequalities in accessing the vaccine by successfully reaching out to groups and communities who might have otherwise struggled, such as homeless people, those living in areas of high deprivation, seasonal workers, vaccine-hesitant populations and those who weren’t registered with a local GP.
Simon Trickett, chief executive of NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire said: “The pandemic has highlighted the existing health inequalities suffered by many people, and our approach to the vaccination programme provided us with the opportunity to make a difference to the lives of the people and communities we serve.
“This award is for each and every one of those who worked to deliver the vaccines, from the larger vaccination centres through to our community outreach teams.
“We have a vision for more integrated health and care services across the two counties, and this is an excellent example of partners working together for the benefit of our population.”
Coun Karen May, cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing at Worcestershire County Council said; “Throughout the pandemic Worcestershire County Council has worked with our health partners to support the delivery of vaccinations and protect our residents from Covid-19.
“I am delighted to see that hard work has been recognised in these awards and congratulate everyone who has worked so tirelessly. The dedication and commitment of everyone involved has helped to protect our residents and ensure we continue to have strong partnerships in healthcare going forward.”
Dr Mohammed Saqib Anwar, deputy regional medical director at NHS England and NHS Improvement in the Midlands, said: “It was so heart-warming to read about all the fantastic work that is being done by some amazing individuals and teams across the region.
“Heartfelt congratulations to all the winners and the nominees – it is people and teams like these that are the heartbeat of the NHS.”
The NHS Parliamentary Awards was launched in 2018 to celebrate the NHS’ 70 birthday and recognise the outstanding contribution of staff, volunteers and others working in the health and care sector.