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Oldham to give vaccine priority to the homeless

Oldham Council and local GPs have announced the borough’s homeless will be given priority for Covid-19 vaccinations.

Over the coming weeks and months Team Oldham will be offering the vaccine to people who find themselves with no permanent home, along with other groups already receiving the vaccine, as we look to try and stop the disease spreading.

Since the mass vaccination programme started in Oldham in December, more than 3,700 residents have taken up the offer of the vaccine.

‘Unfortunately, Oldham, like towns and cities across the country does have people who are homeless – many through no fault of their own,’ says cabinet member for health and social care, Cllr Zahir Chauhan.

‘People living on the streets, or those who have no permanent address, are some of the most vulnerable people in society and need help and support.

‘Because they live on the streets they can also come into contact with a large number of people, which means if they have coronavirus there is a big risk they could pass it on to others. That’s why it is important they are offered the vaccine.

‘We also know that most people who are homeless have experienced a lot of trauma, both prior to and during homelessness,’ added Cllr Chauhan.

‘That means they may have good reasons for not trusting healthcare providers and people in authority. They may also hear misinformation on the street.

‘But our message is the same to everyone – the vaccination is safe and if you are offered it please take it up as you are helping protect yourselves, your family, friends and the wider community.’

Photo Credit – Quinntheislander (Pixabay)

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