'Fully booked' vaccination clinic at Forest Gate mosque hailed a success

A woman receives her Covid-19 vaccination

Emma Moore, 84, receives her first Covid-19 vaccination jab. - Credit: Newham Council / Andrew Baker

A mosque in Forest Gate hosted a pop-up Covid vaccination clinic as part of ongoing efforts to encourage eligible people to get their jab.

Two full-day sessions were held at Minhaj-ul-Quran mosque on March 31 and April 1, following several similar events organised with faith groups in the borough.

It's part of work being done by the NHS and partners to provide facts about the vaccine and build trust among communities in order to address the challenges of vaccine uptake.

The Covid-19 vaccine being administered.

The Covid-19 vaccine being administered. - Credit: Newham Council / Andrew Baker

The vaccine is safe and effective; contains no animal or egg products; is vegan, halal and kosher friendly; and provides the best protection from Covid-19.

GP and Newham clinical chair for NHS North East London Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Muhammad Naqvi, said: “While we’ve successfully vaccinated thousands of people across the borough, we are still keen to encourage many more eligible residents to come forward when invited.

“Working closely with our partners in local faith groups gave people the opportunity to raise any concerns they might have, seek reassurance from familiar and trusted voices and have their vaccination in locations they know well.

Dr Muhammad Navqi, Newham CCG chairman, is pleased with the new mental health crisis line.

Dr Muhammad Navqi, Newham clinical chair for NHS North East London CCG. - Credit: www.nelcsu.nhs.uk

“Taking this approach means we have been able to successfully vaccinate people who were previously hesitant about coming forward.” 

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The clinic at the mosque, which was organised in partnership with the NHS, the council and GPs from Newham Health Collaborative, was fully booked.

Those who attended were invited by the mosque and came from priority groups - people aged 50 and over or with long-term conditions.

Newham director of public health Jason Strelitz said more than 100,000 people from the borough have been vaccinated so far.

“This is a great step forward in protecting our friends and families, but we are continuing to build on this," he said.

“Holding clinics in trusted community spaces is a vital part of making vaccinations easily accessible for our residents and will help to maximise our reach of protection against this deadly virus."

Newham Health Collaborative chief executive Karen Livingstone added: “Newham is a place of extraordinary diversity, and we need diversity in our approach to ensure that everyone has equal access to these life-saving vaccines.”