St Albans' Club Batchwood hailed as one of best performing COVID vaccination centres in Britain

Inside the Batchwood vaccination centre.

Inside the Batchwood vaccination centre. - Credit: Supplied

The vaccination team at 'Club Batchwood' has been congratulated by health secretary Matt Hancock and MP Daisy Cooper for being one of the best-performing centres in Britain.

The clinic at Batchwood Hall - which has been administering jabs since December - has gained national recognition for its valiant efforts in combating COVID-19.

Inside the vaccination centre at Batchwood Hall.

The vaccination team at Batchwood Hall - Credit: Archant

In a letter to St Albans MP and deputy Lib Dem leader Daisy Cooper on February 3, Matt Hancock congratulated Club Batchwood for "having now vaccinated all over 80s in the system". 

Mr Hancock also praised the speed of the vaccine roll-out and the “fantastic efforts” of the Batchwood centre. He added: “This is down to the tireless efforts of all those involved, especially those on the ground in our communities, from nurses, to GPs, to pharmacies, to volunteers, and so many more.

“It’s incredible to see this community spirit, as people pull together to lead us collectively out of the pandemic.”

Batchwood Hall's vaccination team launched a drive-thru service this week, despite the snow and freezing temperatures

A drive-thru vaccination clinic launched at Club Batchwood last week - Credit: STAHFED

Local Lib Dem councillors have joined the Club Batchwood team to help prepare the centre for their vaccination clinics.

Among the volunteers at Batchwood Hall were up to a dozen local Liberal Democrat councillors and campaigners, looking after patients turning up for their jabs.

Daisy also helped get a new WiFi system installed through BT, while Batchwood campaigner Sinead Howland sourced 14 laptops from donors so centre staff could enter patient data.

Ms Cooper also directly addressed PM Boris Johnson in January at Prime Ministers Questions, when it emerged that Batchwood was only receiving enough vaccine to open two days a week, in a bid to ensure GPs were receiving a larger and more consistent supply.

Daisy Cooper at PMQs on January 13

Daisy Cooper MP directly addressed PM Boris Johnson at PMQs via video link on January 13 - Credit: Parliament.tv/YouTube

Daisy said: “Our local GPs totally deserve this national recognition for their brilliant work in getting the Batchwood centre up and running.

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"I saw for myself the amazing work of the GPs, primary care staff and many community volunteers in setting up this new service at incredible speed. They have all done us proud.

“I am also continuing to bang the drum about needing more vaccine supply so Batchwood can open for more than two days a week.”

Chris White, Lib Dem leader of St Albans council, said: “I’m pleased the district council was able to give its support – not just in providing the building but also with the speedy work in setting up the centre.

“I’m also proud of the tremendous effort Liberal Democrat councillors and activists have put in at Batchwood, and at other centres in Harpenden and throughout the district.”

Joint clinical lead Dr Helen McAndrew added: “We’re pleased to see the secretary of state recognising the role of primary care in delivering this critical public health service to our community.

Batchwood Hall vaccination drive thru

“Our success is down to the hard work, collaboration and can-do attitude." - Credit: St Albans & Harpenden GP Federation

“Our success is down to the hard work, collaboration and can-do attitude of all eight general practices, the local district council, community volunteers and other organisations, including businesses who have donated much-needed supplies in order to keep our momentum going.

“For us this is not just our job and our patients – it’s about our community and our home, our family and our friends.”

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