People with learning disabilities in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent to get the COVID-19 vaccine

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The COVID-19 vaccination programme in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent is getting ready to vaccinate all of those in the area who have a diagnosed learning disability.

Under the guidelines from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), those with a severe and profound learning disability are eligible for vaccination as part of 'cohort six' in the next few weeks. In Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, we will offer the vaccine to all people who are identified as having Learning Disability in their GP registers.

Dr Paddy Hannigan, GP and clinical lead for the local C-19 vaccination programme, said: "It is challenging for individual clinicians to be able to define what could be a severe or profound disability, so to avoid confusion and worry, we have decided to vaccinate all those aged over 16 on GP Learning Disability registers.

"We ask patients not to contact their GP practice for an appointment. We will contact you over the coming weeks to offer an appointment."

Dr Richard Harling, Staffordshire's Director of Health and Care, said: "We know people with learning disabilities are at higher risk of complications from Covid, so welcome the news that all adults with learning difficulties will be offered the vaccine as a priority.”

Paul Edmondson-Jones, Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s Director for Social Care, Health Integration & Well-being said: “"People are always at the heart of decisions that we make. Wherever we can, we'll always aim to put them first. I'm so pleased for the families across the city and county who will benefit as a result."