Rabbis have been requesting vaccine clinics at synagogues. Photograph: LDRS

Pop-up clinics will visit synagogues in Hackney to help get people vaccinated against coronavirus, and work is expected to continue until the spring to get more people protected.

Health workers will also be encouraging 18-25-year-olds to inoculate themselves against the misery of Covid.

City and Hackney’s vaccination programme director Graham MacDougall said rabbis have requested the visiting clinics at synagogues.

It is one of the steps bring taken to get as many Hackney residents protected from the virus as possible, along with work to boost vaccine confidence.

City and Hackney is no longer the worst performing area in north-east London but has only moved up to second from bottom for first vaccinations and third from bottom for second vaccinations.

Other moves include calling up to 2,000 unvaccinated people a week to allay their fears.

In his report for Hackney’s health and wellbeing board (2 September), MacDougall said one in 10 people are taking a wait-and-see approach and some are declining the jab, including “a significant outstanding number” of clinically extremely vulnerable patients.

He said some of these patients have had several conversations with medics and are experiencing “some degree of vaccine fatigue” .

There is also a push to get more people in the 18-29 age group vaccinated.

The take-up amongst 20-24-year-olds varies. By 26 July, 59 per cent of white people aged 20-24 in Hackney had been vaccinated, compared with 25 per cent of Black residents in the same age group.

MacDougall said the perception of risk has changed with younger groups, and areas of deprivation also play a part in uptake.

“We see a descending level of uptake as we move into younger and younger cohorts,” he added.

He added when vaccines were first offered to 18-25-year-olds, “we did see an increase in activity. And then what’s happened nationally is that we have seen that fall off a cliff edge, so it dropped severely in terms of those coming forward for their first dose”.

Medics are looking at ways to combat this in Hackney by working with community youth groups.

Walk-in vaccinations are also on offer at  local vaccination sites or participating pharmacies.

Currently, young people aged 17 years and nine months can get two doses of the Pfizer jab. They can book through the National Booking Service and go to any vaccination site.

Those aged between 16 and 17 and nine months can get the first dose and can book or walk in to some services including St Leonard’s and local vaccination sites.

Children aged 12-15 who are at risk of infection, or those living with people at risk, can get vaccines and the third dose booster.

Medics are also preparing to deliver a booster programme later this month, depending on government announcements.

Support us

The coronavirus outbreak meant that the Hackney Citizen was unable to print a monthly newspaper for three months.

We're grateful that we have since been able to resume printing. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our readers, whose donations kept the paper from disappearing completely at a distressing time for residents.

A huge thank you to everyone who gave their time and money to support us through the lockdown, and to those who continue to do so as we slowly recover from the dramatic fall in advertising revenues, on top of the existing challenges threatening the future of local journalism.

A one-off donation or a regular contribution from anyone who can afford it will help our small team keep the newspaper in print and the website running in the coming months and years.

Find out how you can donate.

Thank you for your support, and stay safe.

The Hackney Citizen team