The Mayor of Liverpool is backing Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram and the leaders of Halton, Knowsley, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral Councils in calling on the Government for extra vaccine supplies for Liverpool City Region.
In a letter to Health Secretary Matt Hancock and Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi today (Friday 11 June), Mayor Joanne Anderson and other political leaders say that the Liverpool City Region is now “surrounded” by areas with high infection rates and that it is inevitable that the City Region will be next.
The leaders had previously written to the vaccines minister on 21 May but have yet to receive a response. Since then, the situation has continued to deteriorate in neighbouring areas, meaning that there is now an urgent need to act now to achieve maximum vaccine coverage amongst vulnerable communities.
The Liverpool City Region has been hit harder than other areas during the pandemic and was in autumn last year the first to be put in to tier 3 measures. It is already challenged by deep-rooted health inequalities, which have been made worse during the pandemic.
In a joint statement, the Metro Mayor, City Mayor and Leaders said:
“Today we have called on the Health Secretary and Vaccine Minister to urgently provide our City Region with extra vaccines so that we can get our most vulnerable communities vaccinated as soon as possible.
“We know from previous experience that it is inevitable that this wave of infections will hit us in next couple of weeks. Coupled with the relaxation of lockdown and increased social mobility this will create a larger wave with deeper impacts, exactly as we have seen in previous waves across the North West. We need to heed the lessons from previous waves and not simply repeat the approaches taken previously.
“We wrote to the Vaccines Minister on 21 May and have yet to receive a response. The situation is now urgent and we need extra vaccines and the flexibility and resources to use them to achieve maximum vaccine coverage across our vulnerable communities and also to accelerate the vaccination of the to provide wider population coverage.
“It is vital that we do this now to get ahead of the situation and minimise the impact of this new wave of infections.”