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Event venues step up to help vaccination programme

by Martin Fullard

Event venues across the UK have been transformed into vaccination centres as the UK continues to push ahead with its inoculation programme.

Despite being largely forgotten by the Government during the Covid-19 pandemic, the events industry has proved its value to the nation. While high-profile venues such as ExCeL London and Epsom Racecourse have been largely converted to handle thousands of people each day, more than one hundred other event venues have also joined the national effort.

However, despite the Government saying it plans to vaccinate 200,000 per day, it remains unclear for how long many of these venues have been contracted as vaccination centres.

An NHS England press office spokesperson told EN that, along with operating as a vaccination centre, ExCeL London has been reopened as a Nightingale hospital to treat non-critical care patients.

“NHS Nightingale Hospital London is being reopened for patients completing their care after an emergency hospital stay – a step-down rehabilitation centre,” they said. “It is in a different part of the large London ExCeL Centre and entirely separate to the vaccination centre, with its own entrance, catering, kitchen and bathroom facilities.

“The ExCeL London vaccination centre will come online this week and will enable more Londoners to be protected against Covid-19 in addition to the significant number of vaccination services already delivering Covid-19 vaccines in the city.
“The NHS Nightingale Hospital London is not being used to treat critical care patients.”

ExCeL London  is one of seven mass vaccination centres to have been set up, which also includes event venues Epsom Racecourse, Hertford Development Centre, Ashton Gate Stadium, and Millennium Point Birmingham. Manchester Tennis and Football Centre and Centre for Life Science Park in Newcastle make up the seven.

A detailed list of all UK venues operating as vaccination hubs can be found here (Source: NHS England).

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