ALMOST all residents living in care homes in Inverclyde have had the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccination - as the health board accelerates the roll out.

NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde started the programme in nursing homes in December.

Kincaid House resident and former nurse Aileen Hunter was one of the first to receive her jab last month.

Plans are in place to deliver the jab to a small number of residents who were not able to get the vaccine in their care home.

Arrangements are also being made to vaccinate residents who are housebound.

The first people in the over 80 age group received their vaccination today. Further rollout to this age group will continue next week and people will be contacted directly by their GP practice or the health board.

Meanwhile jab clinics at Inverclyde Royal continue for frontline health and social care staff.

A spokeswoman for NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde said: "We look forward to being able to roll out the vaccination programme and staff clinics will be held at Inverclyde Royal Hospital.

"We’d like to thank all frontline health and social care staff in Inverclyde who have taken the opportunity to be vaccinated so far and also all the vaccinators who have worked so hard to ensure as many people are vaccinated as possible.

"Care home residents have been receiving the vaccine since mid-December and the majority of care homes in Inverclyde have already completed their first doses in the vaccination programme.

"Until now, it has been the Pfizer vaccine which has been used.

"Supplies of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine have now started to arrive and these will be used initially by GP staff to vaccinate their patients who are over 80 years old.

"In line with the national vaccination programme, this is expected to commence from next week."

The health board say that they have had a very high uptake of the vaccine, with 12,046 health care workers and 2,460 care home staff across Greater Glasgow and Clyde now protected.

The spokeswoman added: "We follow national prioritisation guidelines for the vaccine.

"In line with this guidance and following a risk assessment, any member of staff - clinical or non-clinical - who has contact with patients can receive the vaccine.

"This includes staff working in our Community Assessment Centres. The risk assessment also allows for high-risk, BAME and staff over the age of 65 to be vaccinated.

NHS GGC bosses are also introducing a new national model to protect local Inverclyde A&E services for those that require them, and ensure people receive the right type of care as quickly as possible, has been rolled out across NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHS GGC).

The ‘Right Care Right Place’ model means patients who would normally attend A&E for an urgent but non-life-threatening condition should now instead call NHS24 on 111 for a telephone assessment and referral to the most appropriate service suited to their needs.

Patients are also being reminded to continue using their local GPs for advice.

For life-threatening emergencies, patients should still dial 999 or go directly to A&E.

Dr Scott Davidson, deputy medical director for Acute Services at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, added: “We are keen for the public to embrace the new model as it will ensure our local Inverclyde doctors and nurses can continue looking after priority Covid and non-Covid patients, and that Inverclyde Royal Hospital’s A&E services are safeguarded for those with life-threatening illnesses."