People urged to 'please keep trying' as over 55s struggle to book their Covid vaccines in Milton Keynes
As the city's Covid vaccine programme reaches those aged 55 and over, people are once again reporting problems booking a local slot for their jab
MK has one of the largest vaccination centres in the region at Saxon Court and it also has seven other local vaccination hubs.
But when it became the turn of the over 65s earlier this month, people trying to book via the NHS website found not a single appointment was available in the borough.
Instead they were offered jabs at centres in Northampton, Luton, Bedford, Aylesbury or even London.
One Milton Keynes couple, booking at the same time, could only get slots 25 miles apart - one in Luton and one in Aylesbury.
The same problems are now being reported this week by the over 55s, many of whom have been sent letters asking them to book online.
They do not apply to patients booked in through their GP surgeries in MK - all these are offered a local appointment.
Today a spokesman for MK Council asked people trying to book online to be patient and keep trying .
"New appointments for MK’s vaccination centre are released daily on the NHS website," he said.
"If you’re eligible to book and can’t get a local COVID-19 vaccination appointment straight away, please keep trying. More appointments will be posted."
The Citizen asked the Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Groups if there was a problem.
A spokesman said: "Anyone in a priority group invited to have their vaccine can look for an appointment at a time and location that’s convenient to them through the national booking service. New appointments are regularly added to the system as they become available, and alternatively, people can choose to wait to be contacted by their local GP services.”
The CCG confirmed it reviewed the number of appointments it can offer at its vaccination sites based on expected supply of the vaccine at each site.
As well as the over 55s, other people eligible to book a vaccine this week are anybody at high risk from coronavirus (clinically extremely vulnerable), any frontline health of social care workers, anyone with a learning disability and anyone who is a main carer for someone at high risk of coronavirus.