COVID vaccine

More than half a million COVID-19 vaccinations have been given by fire and rescue services staff, according to a report by the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC).

As reported, the figure as of today (7 January) is at 510,540 – a testament to the hard work from all involved, and will only increase as fire services continue their efforts to support the national programme.

It is estimated up to 2,500 members of staff are supporting this vital work to get everyone eligible protected and boosted.

Between 27 December and 2 January, 6,311 vaccinations were given – an increase of more than a thousand from the week before.

In addition to giving the jabs, fire services have spent more than 280,000 hours supporting the vaccination efforts. This included setting up sites to assist in the drive for 1500 additional vaccination sites, to get as many people boosted as possible – some of which were up and running within 48 hours.

Retired members of staff have also volunteered, along with people giving up their free time to help.

Chair of the National Fire Chiefs Council, Mark Hardingham, said: “To deliver more than half a million vaccinations to the public is an incredible achievement and contribution from staff across fire and rescue services.

“Once again, staff have stood up and assisted where help is needed most; I would like to thank each and every fire service for their hard work in supporting the vaccination programme.

“Supporting partners and helping to alleviate pressure on the NHS is at the heart of this work; we will continue for as long as we are needed. This widescale dedication to support the public is at the heart of all fire and rescue services do and it is humbling to see.”

The NFCC also highlighted specific examples of assisting fire and rescue services below:  

  • Tyne and Wear: built the vaccination centre at the Newcastle Eagles arena just four days after being asked for support.
  • Cambridgeshire: one volunteer has given more than 3,000 vaccinations since May in his free time.
  • Lancashire: administered more than 1,000 vaccinations in just five days – and dedicated staff ensured hard to reach communities were supported.
  • Merseyside: contributed more than 10,300 hours and delivered more than 82,000 vaccinations.
  • Manchester: set up a dedicated helpline to ensure people could book vaccinations.
  • South Wales: staff are continuing to offer support. Staff who are experienced and skilled in areas such as first aid and trauma care will also now be administering the vaccines to assist Local Health Boards.
  • Staffordshire: set up a walk-in centre at its HQ.
  • Kent: staff collected thousands of vaccines from hospitals across the area and delivered them to centres.
  • Shropshire: staff are operating four walk-in booster clinics, seven days a week, 12 hours a day, to help support their partners. They delivered more than 300 vaccinations on the first day alone in one clinic.
  • Nottinghamshire: staff went back to sites to help in support of their partner organisations. They carried out 215 hours of vaccination support and administered an amazing 1357 vaccines in just one week.
  • Surrey: new recruits due to start on stations in the new year were asked to assist with the vaccination effort.
  • Avon Fire and Rescue Service has nine trained vaccinators who are helping the vaccination/booster programme.
  • South Yorkshire: staff have provided almost 150 volunteer hours to deliver more than 1,600 vaccines.
  • Cheshire: have given more than 90,000 vaccinations and are once again supporting NHS colleagues, with 139 staff trained as volunteers.
  • Cleveland Fire Brigade’s ‘grab a jab’ campaign has had great success and has now more than 10,000 volunteer hours to the pandemic.