Agenda item

Agenda item

COVID-19 Update and Vaccination Programme Update

The report of the Director of Public Health and Medical Director, Manchester Health and Care Commissioning is enclosed.


The Director of Public Health and Medical Director, Manchester Health and Care Commissioning gave a presentation on the latest data and intelligence relating to COVID-19, with a particular focus on Variants of Concern (VOC). The Medical Director, Manchester Health and Care Commissioning, provided the Board with a progress report on the ongoing roll out of the Vaccination Programme.


The Board was reminded that Greater Manchester had been designated as an enhanced response area. The data provided had been validated up to 4 June 2021. In view of the increase in the number of infections the message continued to be the importance of vaccination. Reference was made to the number of people being admitted to hospital and the circumstances relating to this, in particular other underlying medical issues. The North West is dealing with a fourth wave in view of the rising number of infections being recorded.


The current dominant variant is the Delta Variant and is 40% more transmissible than the Alpha Variant. The current rate of infection is 216.7 per 100000 population. A breakdown of cases per ward was provided with the number of deaths of Manchester residents recorded between week 13 to week 20. To increase the rates of vaccination a focused vaccination approach had been introduced into the top eight wards of the City with the highest rates of Variants of Concerns cases. The growth in vaccination had resulted in a reduction of deaths. The Manchester Action Plan had proved successful in


·         Targeted communications and engagement

·         Enhanced community testing and contact tracing

·         Support to self-isolate (GM Pathfinder)

·         Settings based outbreak management and advice

·         Track data on a daily basis (e.g. over 60s rate and hospitalisations)

·         Targeted Vaccination Drive


Additional vaccines supplies were expected to help with the push on vaccinations.


The Executive Director for Children Services provided an update on the advice and approach for schools. This included the continued wearing of masks, testing and advice on maintaining a safe space an hand washing. Planning was also in place for children transitioning to high school and planning for recovery.


Dr Manisha Kumar, Medical Director, MHCC addressed the meeting on the Covid 19 Vaccination Programme.


The Board was informed that the latest first dose vaccinated number in the City is 290763, although though the actual number is higher, due to those not living within the City or registered with a Manchester GP not included in the total. The figure for those receiving a second vaccination dose is 173813. Work was ongoing to focus on the wards within the central areas of the City and to target hotspots where the take up of the vaccine is lower. In addition, there are almost 250,000 residents to invite for a vaccine for the 10-12 cohorts. Reference was made to the approach and engagement with all cohorts to increase access for the take up of the vaccine. Communication is an essential factor in reaching all areas with work through local groups and community leaders, social media and door knocking to directly contact and engage with residents. It was reported that there are (approx.) 3700 volunteers helping to run vaccination centres currently who’s help has been invaluable.


The Chair thanked the officers for the presentation. Reference was made to the importance of staying strong in the work of ensuring the take up of the vaccine regardless of community or location. Residents have a personal responsibility to take the vaccine and not doing so places them, other residents and the NHS at risk and increases the chances of other domestic variants developing which may be more resistant to the current vaccines.


The Chair also reported on the Surge Vaccination Programme planned for Greater Manchester for a 3 week period. Manchester will utilise the whole of the period to provide vaccinations, due to the high number of residents involved. For the over 40 age group there is a good level of supply of the Astrazeneca vaccine to provide first and second doses and increase levels of protection. For the under 40 age group the important factor would be the accessing of sufficient doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for the surge vaccination period.


The Chair responded to a question raised regarding the potential impact of taking vaccine from area to use in another and stated that by using the vaccine to contain the spread of infection in a high prevalence area, it would in turn reduce the risk of spread in other areas.


In noting the point raised regarding Patient Practices, the Chair endorsed the importance of working with neighbouring authorities, in particular instances where communities are located across two local authorities such as the Jewish community where Manchester residents were receiving a vaccination in Salford.


The Chair referred to infection prevalence figures which indicated a high rate for the 19-65years population. The figures produced by GMCA provided additional detail and identified the 16-29years age group as the highest prevalence cohort. It was also noted that this age group were less likely to have received a higher level of vaccination. This provided a correlation of prevalence of infection and non-vaccination to further justify to importance of getting vaccinated as soon as possible.


The Executive Director of Adult Services referred to partnership working and expressed thanks to Manchester Foundation Trust for the collaborative approach since the start of the pandemic on testing on release from hospital before national guidance was issued, vaccination work in the care sector and opening up the Pfizer vaccination to the under 40’s age group.


The Chair referred to concerns raised regarding the Enhanced Response Area guidance and stated that a common-sense approach was needed in applying the guidance. No rules or restrictions apply to Greater Manchester that don’t also apply to the rest of the country. Local lockdown measures did not work and the national lockdown was most effective to reduce the spread of infection.




The Board received the presentation and noted the plan update and thanked everyone involved in the vaccination programme for their massive effort.

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