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Call for Scrutiny: The Covid Vaccination Programme Roll-out in Folkestone and Hythe

January 19, 2021 3:13 PM

Microscope (Acagastya, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a5/Compound_Microscope_%28cropped%29.JPG)From https://www.folkestone-hythe.gov.uk/news/community-scrutiny-issues : "Folkestone & Hythe District Council's Overview and Scrutiny Committee is planning its programme for 2021/22 and seeking suggestions for district-wide matters which are important to your community."

The most important thing about the Covid Vaccination roll-out locally is that it happens as quickly as possible, and I'm going to do nothing that gets in the way of those trying to roll it out.

However, when that it up to speed, there are reasonable questions to be answered on why the vaccination roll-out was around a month quicker in Hythe than for the rest of the district. Was that an unavoidable issue in Folkestone and on the Marsh due to practical roll-out issues? Or were there delays that need to be understood so they can be avoided if we face similar needs in future?

I've submitted a form calling for Folkestone & Hythe Overview and Scrutiny Committee to review the vaccination roll-out on the form which can be found here. The deadline for submissions is Friday 5 February 2021. If other people feel strongly that questions should be asked, and answered, on this so we learn lessons for the future, I'd ask them to call for scrutiny of the Folkestone & Hythe district vaccination roll-out too.

My submission:

What is the nature of your concern?

To review the Covid Vaccination roll-out in the District, to understand why Folkestone and the Marsh were so much later seeing vaccination starting compared to Hythe, and the lessons we should learn for future emergency situations.

What do you think it should achieve?

Understand from the NHS, Council and other relevant partners the vaccination roll-out in the district, and the large time differences in doing so in different parts of the district. By understanding those differences, it can feed into the emergency plans for the district to try to "level up" response times in future.

Who does it affect?

All residents.

What action would solve the problem?

It is important to hear from all partners why there was such a difference (up to a month) in vaccinations starting. Was this an NHS, Council, or other partner issue? Only by understanding the issues and hearing from each party in public why they occurred can plans be reasonably put in place for any future situation. Until we scrutinise and understand why this occurred, we won't know what lessons to draw from it, or how to update emergency plans or resources for any similar future event.

What other avenues have you explored?

Publicly assessible information on the Covid vaccination roll-out locally has not explained in any way the differential in roll-out times.

Any other partners or external services who could participate in the consideration of this topic

NHS, including surgery groups & CCG. F&HDC officers asked for and providing resources to the NHS. Other vaccination coordinating bodies.