Drop-in vaccination clinic to be set up in Leicester mosque

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The vaccine pop-up clinic will be one of several planned in parts of Leicester and Leicestershire (Image: Getty)

A community centre and mosque in Leicester will host a pop-up vaccination clinic on Thursday March 25.

The clinic, which will open in the Al Furqan Centre in St Matthews, is one of a series of pop-up vaccination centres planned for the city by health bosses.

It will vaccinate people over the age of 50, as well as those over 18 with an existing medical condition, between 8am and 8pm for one day only.

Health bosses have identified St Matthews as one of the areas where Covid-19 vaccinations have not progressed as quickly as planned along with St Peter’s, Charnwood, Spinney Hill, Northfield, Crown Hills and the St Saviour’s neighbourhoods.

The Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Group is now planning further pop up clinics in other areas with low vaccine uptake.

Dr Samira Hassan, a GP in Leicester, has worked closely with the Somali community in St Matthews for several years and will be working at the clinic on Thursday.

She told LeicestershireLive: “One of the beauties of this clinic in particular is that not only is going to be at the local mosque and community hub but it will also be delivered by Somali healthcare workers.

“This helps to break down language barriers and cultural barriers which will address fears or scepticism around the vaccine.”

Vaccine uptake has been lower in Leicestershire’s Asian communities since the rollout began, but Dr Hassan has held a number of webinars in a bid to tackle the issue, which she said have helped develop “deep-rooted trust” between health organisations and communities.

“Having the centre at the local mosque also means people will see others who look like them getting the vaccine too, which will make people feel more comfortable about getting it themselves,” she added.

A Leicester and Rutland CCG spokesperson said: “We are learning from what has been done in other areas in the country where uptake of the vaccine has really improved.

“We will be evaluating the St Matthews pop-up experience this week and using the findings to inform what we do next.

“These clinics are vitally important in order to really engage with local communities and enable ease of access to the vaccine, particularly where vaccine uptake is low and where we continue to have the risk factors which lead to higher rates of Covid-19.”

The LLR CCG said that each area is chosen based on data regarding low vaccine uptake and “insights work” undertaken with local health colleagues and local authorities.

Further pop-up clinics are being also planned for areas in and around Loughborough and Coalville and LLR CCG say they are also looking into setting them up in the Mowmacre and Stocking Farm area too.

More information about dates and exact locations will be shared once they are confirmed.

The clinic on Thursday will take place at the Al Furqan Centre, 1 Kamloops Crescent, St Matthews on Thursday from 8am to 8pm.

Those attending are asked to bring ID, their NHS invite letter if you have one or your NHS number which can be found on NHS letter addressed to you.