COVID-19 vaccinations will be rolled out at Forth Valley College Campuses after the College offered their state-of-the-art facilities to NHS Forth Valley.
Falkirk, Stirling and Alloa Campuses will play a key role as Scotland ramps up its campaign to tackle the virus and vaccinate the communities of Forth Valley.
It is understood distribution of the vaccinations will begin from the end of January at the Falkirk Campus and by the second week in February in Stirling and Alloa. NHS Forth Valley will be contacting people to offer an appointment over the coming weeks. Members of the public are advised not to attend the College without a vaccination appointment.
Forth Valley College Campuses already have robust procedures in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19 including: a compulsory mask wearing policy in public areas, hand sanitisers placed at entrances and strategic points in the buildings, easy to understand and highly visible signage to ensure social distancing and instruct visitors how to proceed on arrival and protective screens at reception and at other areas, are all complimented by regular enhanced cleaning procedures including an innovative campus wide fogging technique, which takes place at regular weekend intervals.
The campuses are also ideal to host the vaccinations right now as most students and staff are learning and working from home.
Forth Valley College Principal Dr Ken Thomson, said: “As Forth Valley College are at the heart of the communities of Falkirk, Stirling and Alloa, we felt it was important to offer NHS Forth Valley our campuses as possible vaccination centres over the coming weeks. At the moment the vast majority of our staff and students are working from home and we have areas in all our campuses which would be ideal to situate and host such a service.
“We are just very proud that we could be of service at this time and hope it helps the Forth Valley area emerge from the pandemic lockdown as soon as we possibly can.”
Cathie Cowan, Chief Executive, NHS Forth Valley, said: “NHS Forth Valley are delighted that Forth Valley College have offered their campuses to the vaccination team for the purpose of administering COVID-19 vaccinations to the population of Falkirk, Stirling and Alloa.
“These modern, accessible buildings provide flexible indoor spaces and outdoor car parking and drop off areas that are ideal for people of all ages and mobility levels, to come and receive their vaccine safely during the time of a pandemic. We are very grateful to all the college and local authority teams, who have been working with us to make this happen and are looking forward to welcoming everyone for their vaccine at their scheduled appointment time.”
Councillor Cecil Meiklejohn, Leader of Falkirk Council said: “The last year has been extremely challenging for local people and our business community. However we are now seeing the light at the end of the tunnel with the roll out of the vaccine across Scotland.
“The vaccination centre based at Forth Valley College is critical to combatting the virus and is welcome news indeed for our communities.”
Cllr Ellen Forson, Leader of Clackmannanshire Council said: “The vaccination programme is really gathering pace, and it’s great to see community locations like the Alloa campus of Forth Valley College being used to help ensure that local people can receive their injections.
“The new Scottish Government campaign encourages us all to ‘roll our sleeves up’ when we get the call for our vaccination, and I really hope that everyone in Clackmannanshire will do that when they’re contacted.
“It is also important that everyone continues to follow the rules in force at the moment to help keep ourselves, our families and our communities safe from this virus.”
Karen Watt, CEO of the Scottish Funding Council, said: “Since the beginning of the pandemic, colleges have time and again acted swiftly to respond to the national effort to tackle the virus and support the communities they serve. We are delighted to support Forth Valley College play an important part in the vaccination roll out programme.”