Covid vaccinations are under way in Uckfield this morning (December 15).
The first patient was 80-year-old Brian Harrison and it was Dr Andrew Duckworth who injected him with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at the Meads Medical Centre at 7.40am.
Brian is a big fan of the medical centre and has been visiting regularly in recent weeks to have injections for pernicious anemia.
His wife Jill should have been with him today but she was on antibiotics after a fall so wasn’t allowed the vaccine.
Mr Harrison said he was very excited to be the first patient to be vaccinated and he hoped that a week after his second jab he would be able to go back to his hobby as an engineer helping to preserve old aircraft at Tangmere Military Aviation Museum, near Chichester.
He and Jill live at Piltdown and have two grown-up daughters and four grandchildren who all live in Newbury.
The couple have lived in the Uckfield area – Newick and Maresfield, before Piltdown – ever since they got married about 50 years ago.
Doctors surgeries in the Uckfield area, including Mid Downs (Newick), Buxted Medical Centre, Bird in Eye Surgery, and Herstmonceux Medical Centre, are working together to deliver the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.
Each is contacting its own patients to invite them to the Meads where they will be vaccinated by staff from their own surgeries.
Meads practice manager Charlotte Luck said two vaccinations would be needed by each patient with 975 people benefitting in this first round.
Charlotte said that as soon as the practice heard there was chance to be part of the national vaccination programme they jumped at the chance.
Then when the offer was there to be part of the first wave of vaccinations the practice wasted no time in asking to be involved.
Charlotte said: “We wanted to move quickly to help get this town back to normal.
“Our practice is high-performing and we had exceptional feedback on our flu clinics so we will have a similar set up to deliver this Covid-19 vaccine.”