This week the Prime Minister has announced that a shift into Step 4 openings will be postponed, while the vaccination target for adults is brought forward, to give the NHS more time to complete the programme.
Alongside this is the excellent news that most people over the age of 18 are now eligible for vaccination or will be very soon so please do book as you as you can.
The new Delta variant spreads quickly and two doses are essential to give you maximum protection.
Now the new target is for every adult in the country – that’s everyone 18 and over - to have a first dose by 19 July.
The NHS Birmingham and Solihull vaccination website has details on how to book your vaccination and lots of information about the vaccine:
Do make sure you have to hand all the information you will need to book online, including your NHS number and GP details.
The NHS is also contacting people to bring forward second vaccination appointments, or rebook yourself on the National Booking Service.
England therefore remains in Step 3 until 19 July. You can find the current rules and any exceptions on the government website.
Exceptions include pilot events such as the Euros, now well under way of course. Look out for our summer Euros-themed keep your eye on the ball test and vaccination campaign.
In Solihull the rolling weekly case rate is up 89% in the last 7 days to 68.9 cases per 100,000 people, the second highest rate in the West Midlands Region after Birmingham.
Rates are highest in the 16-24 age group with the delta variant remaining dominant, accounting for 92% of variants of concern notified in the latest reported figures.
This is not where any of us want to be and I would urge everyone to redouble efforts to stop the spread with twice weekly rapid lateral flow tests – even if you’ve been vaccinated.
Access these at our community test sites in Chelmlsey Wood, next to the bus interchange, or Solihull High Street next to Halifax Bank.
There are options to suit everyone – walk in and ask for an assisted test, collect a kit to test at home, order online for free home delivery or pick up a pack from participating local pharmacies.
If you should get a positive rapid test result it’s vital to get a confirmatory PCR test within 48 hours. Check the Covid-19 mobile testing unit timetable or book via the national PCR test booking system.
To remind people as ever - if you do get COVID, (a high temperature, a new continuous cough or you’ve lost your sense of smell or taste or it’s changed), you must self-isolate and get a PCR test immediately as you can spread the virus if you do not self-isolate.
Director of Public Health