Scottish Health Secretary confirms Celtic Park will host Covid-19 vaccinations
Celtic Park is to open up on Monday, 26th of July to host Covid-19 vaccinations.
Both Celtic and Rangers will also be offering shots to walk-in patients. This was confirmed by Scottish Government Health and Social Care Secretary Humza Yousaf on Twitter.
It’s a key part of NHS Scotland’s newest Covid-19 relief efforts. The move follows the use of other sporting facilities, like the Sir Matt Busby Sports Complex in Bellshill [NHS Lanarkshire].
At the time of writing, 92% of the eligible population covered by NHS Lanarkshire have received their first shot of a Covid-19 vaccination. Only 69.8% have received a second.
Moderna vaccines are being offered to those aged 18-39 and have either not had a first jab, or waited over 8 weeks for a second. AstraZeneca vaccinations will be provided for over 40s, under the same conditions.
“Roll up your sleeve”
Celtic Park is to host vaccinations on the 26th of July, between 10am and 6pm. Pauline Howie, Chief Executive of the Scottish Ambulance Service, said [Glasgow Times]:
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“Just come along to our vaccination bus at Celtic Park, Ibrox or Hampden, roll up your sleeve, and one of our team will administer the vaccine.
“Both Moderna and Astra-Zeneca vaccines will be available which means we can cover all eligible demographic groups.
“Let’s all do our part to beat this pandemic.”
It’s little surprise that a plan to use Celtic Park this way has reportedly come to fruition. On the 9th of July, the Daily Mail reported that attempts to use sports stadia for vaccinations had been approved by the Scottish Government.
Stephen McGowan wrote [Daily Mail]:
“With infection rates rising fast amongst the under-30s, the fear of further disruption has prompted Scottish football’s Joint Response Group – led by SFA chief executive Ian Maxwell – to hold positive talks with the Scottish Government over the establishment of on-site vaccination centres in stadium car parks for players, staff and members of the public.
“And clubs have now been encouraged to contact their local health boards as soon as possible to get things rolling and play their part in getting the nation fully vaccinated.”
Opening up Celtic Park for Covid-19 vaccinations is a great idea
Let’s be honest; worthy as it is, going to get your Covid-19 vaccination is hardly the most fun way to spend an hour or two.
So, why not turn it into something fun? Surely, fans of both Celtic and Rangers, who haven’t been jagged, would not turn this down. I, for one, would prefer to get my second vaccine done at Celtic Park.
It’s got to be a particularly attractive prospect for Under-30s. According to the Office for National Statistics, they’re amongst the least interested in being vaccinated. The ONS state that “around 1 in 8 (13%) of those aged 16 to 29 years reported vaccine hesitancy”.
So, why not make a day of it? From the club’s perspective, there’s a very obvious attraction in getting supporters vaccinated. Only a small number of supporters have been allowed back to matches thus far.