Sir Kenny Dalglish visited Anfield's COVID-19 vaccine centre on Saturday to personally thank GPs, vaccinators and volunteers.
Two weeks ago, Liverpool FC’s home stadium joined a growing list of GP-led vaccination locations opening across the city.
And ahead of the Merseyside derby between the Reds and Everton, Sir Kenny paid a visit to the site to show his support for the vaccination programme.
“I really wanted to visit the vaccine centre at Anfield to personally thank some of the incredible NHS staff and volunteers who have been tirelessly working to help protect people from this virus,” said the LFC icon.
“Football plays such an important role in the city of Liverpool, so it feels right that there’s a vaccination site here at Anfield, helping to reach out to people who live in the local communities around it.
“I have already had my COVID-19 vaccination, and I want to encourage everyone else to get one when invited to. Having the vaccine is the best way to protect you and your loved ones, and help get life back to normal.
“Also, the more of us who are protected, the sooner we can get back on the terraces to cheer on our team – whether you’re Red or Blue.”
Dr Fiona Lemmens, chair of NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We were delighted to have Sir Kenny visiting staff at our Anfield vaccination site this weekend.
“The delivery of the vaccination programme in Liverpool is going really well, and it’s such a huge team effort, with everyone from GPs and vaccinators to admin staff, stewards and volunteers, all playing a hugely important role.
“The fact is that it simply wouldn’t have been possible for us to have achieved the kind of vaccination rates that we have so far across the city without these teams working so hard behind the scenes, and it’s wonderful to be recognised in this way.”
To date, more than 100,000 people have been vaccinated across the city of Liverpool, including the vast majority of over 70s, care home residents, health and social care staff, and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable (advised to shield).
But anyone in one of these groups who still has not had a vaccine is encouraged to get in touch with the NHS as soon as possible to arrange it.
You can do this by booking an appointment at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or by calling 119 any time between 7am and 11pm, seven days a week (free of charge). If a suitable slot is not available through this national booking service, you can also call your GP practice to request one.
In addition, the NHS is continuing to see lower rates of take-up amongst people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups attending appointments to be vaccinated, so eligible individuals from these communities are especially encouraged to book an appointment, too.
This week, the local NHS has also begun extending vaccination invites to people aged 65 and over, those aged 16 to 64 with certain underlying health conditions, and any carers in receipt of a carer’s allowance or acting as the primary carer for an elderly or disabled person who is identified as clinically vulnerable.
If you are in one of these new priority groups, you will be contacted by the NHS and invited to book an appointment soon. The NHS expects to complete vaccinations for these groups between now and the end of April.