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Coordinating the Lancashire and South Cumbria COVID-19 vaccination programme


As a key system partner, Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU) is actively supporting the COVID-19 vaccination programme in Lancashire and South Cumbria. In partnership with system leaders, we helped to establish a network of vaccination services. We have been working closely together with colleagues from across the integrated care system (ICS). 


Strategic Vaccinations Operations Centre

Rapidly forming vaccination centres across Lancashire and South Cumbria was no easy task. When the programme took off in November 2020, there was a need for a control room. A Strategic Vaccinations Operations Centre (SVOC) was created at our Jubilee House site in Lancashire with the full support of ICS leads. The centre is resourced with members of CSU, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), trust and wider system colleagues. Having recently built another tactical command room, also in Jubilee House, we were well positioned to support the setup of the SVOC.

System working

Work at the SVOC is ongoing seven days a week in collaboration with partners across Lancashire, CCGs, all trusts, NHS England and Improvement (NHSEI) leads and ICS executives. It has made a phenomenal difference in terms of collaborative working, system thinking and helping each other for the benefit of patients. 


Across Lancashire and South Cumbria, the vaccination programme is fully coordinated from the SVOC:

We provide strategic nursing capacity, together with chief nurses from the local system, to ensure resilience through clinical governance arrangements and senior clinical oversight of vaccination delivery

We provide strategic pharmacy capability, with the medicines lead ICS system role supported by our Medicines Management and Optimisation (MMO) Team

We have supported the development of seven large vaccinations sites in Lancashire and South Cumbria including our estate in Jubilee House and Blackburn Cathedral’s crypt 

We have supported the vaccine programme Board for Lancashire and South Cumbria with a range of other services, including managing the communications across partners to coordinate activity, programme and project management, equalities and diversity advice, IT and data advice as well as IT kit deployment.

A key part in mobilising the vaccination programme has been the outstanding work from multiple partners working collaboratively across the NHS, the Police, Fire Service, military and local authorities.