As restrictions are eased across the country following the move to Step 4 of the roadmap out of lockdown, the local NHS is reminding people living and working in Dorset that it is still important to get vaccinated and it is not too late to book an appointment.

Having both doses of the COVID-19 vaccination is the best way of protecting yourself from the virus.

There are currently nearly thirty sites in the county offering vaccinations either via walk-in session or by appointment including pharmacies and the large-scale vaccination centre at the Bournemouth International Centre (BIC) which has now re-opened.

Local GP and clinical lead for the Dorset COVID-19 vaccination programme Dr Andy Rutland said

“Whilst it is great news that restrictions are lifting, it is still important for everyone to accept that COVID-19 is still with us, and cases are still high both in Dorset and across the country. Getting both doses of the vaccination is by far the best way of protecting yourself so I would ask anyone who has not yet got their jab to do so, including those who may be wavering when it comes to their second dose.

“It is also important for people to self-test to help stop the spread of the virus. Tests are simple and can be ordered free of charge from the national GOV.uk website.

“If we want to return to normal, testing and vaccinations are by far our best way out the pandemic.”

Anyone aged 18 and over can book their appointment or manage existing appointments via www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19 or by calling 119.

Details of local walk-in sessions and more information are available via www.dorsetccg.nhs.uk/vaccinations.