CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Calls for vaccine centre in Queen’s Crescent amid high levels of Covid cases

“At the moment we’re asking people to go further out to get vaccinated or tested, putting others at risk.”

12 March, 2021 — By Harry Taylor

Foyzeur Miah

A COMMUNITY centre leader has called for a vaccination centre to be set up in Queen’s Crescent to tackle one of the borough’s higher rates of Covid infections.

Foyzeur Miah, who is chief executive of the Queen’s Crescent Community Association warned that there was a link between poorer areas and the spread of coronavirus.

He said: “If you look, a lot of these centres are in more affluent areas, it’s fairly distant from deprived areas. It’s another example of what provision is made to deprived areas.”

The QCCA has already helped set up a “lateral flow” Covid testing centre at The Dome sports hall in Weedington Road.

People without symptoms are encouraged to take one of the rapid tests to help screen out any undetected coronavirus cases. Around a third of those with the virus are asymptomatic and unaware that they could be spreading it.

QCCA chief Foyzeur Miah speaks to Holborn and St Pancras MP Sir Keir Starmer during a visit to the Dome

According to this week’s figures, Gospel Oak has the highest rate of Covid in Camden, at 64.7 cases per 100,000 across the previous seven days. Just over three-quarters of people aged over-65 in the area have been given the first vaccination dose.

Mr Miah said: “I think there’s a correlation between deprivation in terms of why those sorts of areas have high rates of Covid. It’s about a lack of services and opportunities available and that’s what QCCA is trying to do. We asked for a lateral flow centre in the heart of Gospel Oak and we’ve asked for a vaccination centre.

“At the moment we’re asking people to go further out to get vaccinated or tested, putting others at risk.”

He added that a vaccine centre there would help break down any vaccine hesitancy among black, Asian and minority ethnic communities (Bame).

“I want to be able to take the vaccine in The Dome, to promote awareness amongst Bame communities that it’s perfectly OK to take the vaccine,” Mr Miah said.

Holborn and St Pancras MP Sir Keir Starmer, the leader of the Labour Party, took one of the lateral flow tests during a constituency visit to the centre on March 5.


SEE ALSO STARMER URGES MORE TO USE COVID-19 LATERAL FLOW TESTING CENTRES


“What we want to do is encourage as many people to do it as possible, for people who are going out to work, people who are in any environment where they are in contact with any other people,” he said.

“The great thing about this is it’s known, it’s The Dome, it’s accessible for everybody here so the more we can encourage people in the better.”

The testing team at the The Dome can carry out 120 tests a day and results are usually returned within 45 minutes. For more information on booking a test, you can log on to camden.gov.uk/rapidtest or call 0207 974 4444

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