The number of seriously ill patients with Covid in Leicester’s hospitals has doubled since Christmas Day, health chiefs are warning today.
Most intensive care beds in Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester General Hospital and Glenfield Hospital are now taken up by people fighting a severe bout of the coronavirus, it’s emerged.
Over 75 per cent of those extremely sick patients are unvaccinated.
And some of them will tragically die in hospital, leading health figures warned.
They issued the chilling warning as they urged everybody in Harborough and across Leicestershire and Rutland to get their booster now in a bid to beat the new highly-infectious Omicron virus.
The rallying call to arms came as almost 190,000 people in the twin counties are still due to get their booster shot – vital to keep them safe.
There are now believed to be over 200 people in Leicester’s three major hospitals fighting Covid after a dramatic spike in admissions over the festive period.
Today Richard Mitchell, Chief Executive of University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, said: “Every known medical condition is made worse by Covid - yet we still have unvaccinated people in our communities.
“The majority of our hospital intensive care beds are taken by Covid patients.
“Over 75 per cent are unvaccinated, some will not make it home. “This is having a big impact on our colleagues and on patients waiting for cancer and cardiac surgery who require an intensive care bed to have their operation,” said Richard.
“Covid vaccination protects against severe illness, it is safe, it is effective.
“Getting your jab is the single most important thing you can do to protect yourself and others.”
Saluting NHS staff spearheading the battle to beat Covid, Andy Williams, Chief Executive of the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: “I commend our frontline health and care staff for all they are doing to continue the fight against Covid, which has simply not gone away.
“If you are not vaccinated, Covid could cost your life, it could cause unbearable pain for your family and your time in intensive care denies someone else the vital care they might need.”
There was a surge in vaccine uptake over Christmas week.
A remarkable 60,398 people were vaccinated in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR) between Monday December 20 and Sunday December 26.
On Christmas Day and Boxing Day more people had the vaccine in this area than anywhere else in the Midlands.
“Despite this there are still many people locally who are overdue for a vaccine dose.
“As of Wednesday 29th December 189,758 people in LLR were due to have their booster, which is essential for maximum protection against the Omicron Covid variant, which is now the dominant type that is circulating,” said the local NHS.
Some 16 per cent of over-18s have still not had their first vaccine dose.
That figure climbs to 34 per cent of those aged 16 to 17 and 54 per cent of 12 to 15-year-olds.
Andy Williams stressed: “I urge everyone to just get their vaccine – it’s not too late for even a first dose.
“It’s the best New Year’s resolution you could make.
“So if you’ve been putting it off for any reason, please get the vaccine now.”
You can get jabbed at a catalogue of vaccine clinics being staged over the New Year bank holiday across Leicestershire.
Many of these are walk-in clinics so you don’t even need to set up an appointment.
You can get more details of how to get the vaccine locally at: https://bit.ly/LLRVacBook