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Mass Covid vaccination centre in Central Milton Keynes READY to open as soon as vaccines are delivered – Milton Keynes Citizen

https://www.miltonkeynes.co.uk/news/people/mass-covid-vaccination-centre-central-milton-keynes-ready-open-soon-vaccines-are-delivered-3092514

Plans began last month to convert the council’s former housing offices into a space where tens of thousands of local people could be vaccinated.

The vacant three-story 185,000 sq ft building is now ready and waiting, with even road closure orders in place to keep people distanced.

But the problem is that it has no vaccines – and sources say the government will not launch it as a mass centre until the end of the month.

Saxon Court at CMK
Saxon Court at CMK

Meanwhile people over 80 and priority cases have been receiving Covid jabs at MK Hospital. Four GP surgeries – Whaddon Medical Centre, Oakridge Medical Centre, Westcroft Health Centre and Central MK Medical Practice are also giving jabs by appointment only to priority groups.

Last week the hospital extended the service to those aged 75 and over, but booking lines were full almost immediately.

This week some MK residents aged 80 and over have received invitations to the new mass vaccination centre being opened in Stevenage.

This is one of seven mass centres, staffed by NHS workers and volunteers, currently opening across the UK at locations including the Excel Centre in London and Manchester’s Etihad Stadium.

It is understood authorities in Milton Keynes are still waiting to hear a definite date for Saxon Court to open.

“It’s all very complicated,” said one source. “There seems to be an issue with the supply of the vaccines that doesn’t match the daily government rhetoric, with national NHS bodies being very secretive.”

“It’s a bit confused and needs to be sorted out.”

Built in 1980, the building sits on a 2.35-acre site in central Milton Keynes, less than 10 minutes from the railway station and close to a host of retail and leisure amenities.

It was sold off by the council last year and eventually a private developer wants to converts it into 250 Build-to-Rent apartments,complete with retail units and public space for cultural and community use. But for the meantime it has been ‘borrowed back’ for use as a vaccination centre.