Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board and Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council have made the joint decision not to open a community vaccination centre (CVC) in Aberfan. It was due to open in Aberfan community centre at the end of this month.
However, following site visits and security inspections, the conclusion was reached the venue is not suitable as a CVC, because of difficulties in storing the vaccines there.
Within the next couple of weeks, the Health Board’s community vaccination centres will begin to offer both the Pfizer and Oxford vaccines during separate clinics, and as well as the storage issues, this flexibility would not have been possible at the proposed location in Aberfan.
Cwm Taf Morgannwg UHB’s Director of Planning and Performance, Clare Williams, said: “This decision is not in any way a reflection on the venue at Aberfan, but was purely the joint conclusion we reached with our local authority colleagues, due to the complexity of storing the vaccines there and the ability to safely switch between vaccinations.”
The current community vaccination centre for people living in the Merthyr Tydfil CBC area is at Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre.
Clare Williams said: “I really want to reassure everyone living in the Merthyr Tydfil area, that in no way will this decision impact on the speed of our vaccination programme.
“You will still be able to have your vaccination in the same timeframe as you would have done and, with our third sector partners, we are looking to increase the transport support which is available to make it as easy as possible for people to get the Merthyr Tydfil CVC.
“It also has the storage options and capacity to increase the number of vaccines administered there if we need to.
“But as it stands, we are currently giving second doses to priority groups 2 and 4 at the CVC, and letters will be going out this week to offer first doses to our groups 7, 8, and 9.”
It is Cwm Taf Morgannwg UHB’s aim to vaccinate everyone in priority groups 5 to 9, approximately 120,000 people in Cwm Taf Morgannwg, with at least their first dose by mid-April, then all adults by the end of July.