HISTORY has been made today as the Island’s first covid-19 vaccination clinic opened its doors.

Carisbrooke Health Centre, in Carisbrooke Road, Newport, is the first site on the Isle of Wight to begin vaccinating people in what is the biggest immunisation programme in the nation’s history.

The first patient through the doors was Kenneth Killeen, 98, from Newport.

Mr Killeen, who served in the RAF during the Second World War, was the first Island person to receive the vaccination.

Isle of Wight County Press: Kenneth Killeen, the first person on the Isle of Wight to have a Covid vaccine.Kenneth Killeen, the first person on the Isle of Wight to have a Covid vaccine.

He said: “It’s not been an easy year for anyone – particularly with lockdown. A lot of elderly people were confined in their homes.

“I didn’t expect to be front of the queue, but very pleased to be. I fully respect people who won’t want it on various grounds, but if you can you should.

“Particularly when you think of medical science now to how it was 98 years ago when I arrived.”

Mr Killeen, who has two children, two grandchildren and four great grandchildren, received his vaccination at 1.46pm.

Giving the vaccination was Dr Myrto Kaklamanou, GP at Carisbrooke Health Centre, and clinical director of the Central and West Health Alliance Primary Care Network.

She said: “This has been a really busy, but a very exciting, week for us and we are proud to be delivering the covid-19 vaccination.

“We are so pleased to be able to offer the vaccination to island patients, and I really want to say thank you to the whole GP practice team and our partners, who have done an incredible job and standing up this clinic so quickly.

“I am so proud to be working with such supportive colleagues who pulled out all the stops to get us going.

“Of course though, we know that this will be a marathon and not a sprint. While it’s great we can start the vaccination programme, we know that the virus will still be in the community for many more months.

“This is why it’s important we continue to follow government guidance, that we wear face coverings, wash our hands and observe social distancing.”

Isle of Wight County Press: The Covid vaccine has arrived on the Isle of Wight.The Covid vaccine has arrived on the Isle of Wight.

The latest phase of the vaccine rollout is being co-ordinated by GP-led primary care networks with more practices and community pharmacies in other parts of England joining on a phased basis during December and in the coming months.

Andrea Finch, lead practice nurse, said: “It’s really exciting that we are one of the first GP hubs in the country to offer the vaccination and such a privilege to be able to vaccinate patients.

“Although the vaccine has been developed very quickly, we know there is still a way to go, so we all need to carry on with what we’re doing and remember hands – face – space.”

All those vaccinated will need a booster jab 21 days later.

The Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at -70C before being thawed out and can only be moved four times within that cold chain before being used.