League table of Covid-19 vaccination take-up and infection rates shows Cambridge in worst position - search for any area
Cambridge has the worst combination of low Covid-19 vaccination rates and high infection rates in the country, analysis by the Cambridge Independent has shown.
Our searchable database and unique league table enables you to compare how 347 local authority areas in the country compare.
We have used Public Health England data on the proportion of people in each area who had received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine by August 12, 2021, and ranked them, with the highest vaccination rate coming first and the lowest in 347th.
Cambridge comes 339th in this ranking, meaning it is in the lowest 10 local authority areas for vaccine take-up, according to PHE data.
Then we have ranked the same local authority areas by their infection rate per 100,000 people for the week to August 12, 2021, with the least infected area ranked first.
Cambridge comes 329th in this ranking, meaning it is in the worst 20 in England and Scotland.
Combining these two rankings into one bar chart shows Cambridge has the worst combination in the two countries, with Peterborough not far behind in the second worst slot.
Below is a bar chart illustrating this, but we also made this data searchable. Simply type in the name of a local authority area to find how it is faring. The table is defaulted to rank local authorities by the take-up of the second Covid jab, lowest first. But you can toggle to tank the authorities on any of the columns, by clicking on the column heading.
Here is the combined ranking as a bar chart, which acts like a league table you don’t want to top - with the best placed local authority, the Shetland Islands, at the foot of the table.
It should be noted that:
- The vaccination proportions are based on government population estimates. Cambridge has a highly transient population due to having two large universities in a relatively small city, which means its population may have been over-estimated compared to others. However, health authorities accept Cambridge’s vaccination take-up is lower than elsewhere in the region.
- Infection rates offer a snapshot from one week, and may fluctuate to some degree according to local spikes.
Across England, 78.5 per cent had received their first dose and 66.9 per cent had their second dose by August 12.
In Cambridge, the PHE data suggests less than two thirds (63.8 per cent) have had their first dose, and under half (48.4 per cent) have had both doses - figures that help to explain why the city has had one of the worst infection rates in the country recently.
In Peterborough, the vaccination rates are a bit better, with 69 having had their first dose, and 56 per cent having had both, but these numbers are still well behind the national average.
So why are Cambridge and Peterborough at the wrong end of this table?
It is certainly not through lack of effort on the part of health authorities in the region, which have set up a huge number of freely available walk-in Covid-19 vaccination clinics across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough - you can see a full list of them here.
Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group has also begun to operate a ‘vaccination vehicle’, which is visiting places with lower take-up of the Covid-19 vaccine.
Last Monday, it visited Arbury in Cambridge, where we asked the CCG’s medical director, Dr Fiona Head, why Cambridge and Peterborough have a lower take-up than elsewhere.
“That’s a picture we’ve seen in many cities across the country,” she said. “Several reasons for that, I think. In part, people in cities maybe feel a little bit less connected - maybe they have other things going on. There is more deprivation in our cities, makes it harder for people to get out and about and have their jab...
“It’s really important, because cities are denser, that people get in and have their shot when they can.
“There’s a lot of work going on in Cambridge and Peterborough - we’ve been doing stuff in Cambridge Mosque, we've been doing stuff in Peterborough football ground, and a whole load of other places in between as well.”
Cambridge’s younger demographic - again driven by its high proportion of students - may also have delayed take-up of vaccinations compared to other areas, as younger people were last on the list to get jabs, which are now available for all over-16s.
Examining the rest of the county - which comes under the same CCG - shows a better picture. Huntingdonshire fares best, in 138th. South Cambridgeshire, which has better than average vaccination rates - is in the top half of the table at 145th, and East Cambridgeshire at 149th is not far behind. Outside of the cities covered by the CCG, only Fenland, in 220th, is in the lower half.
Dr Head noted that Wisbech, in Fenland, had been another area where vaccination take-up is not as high as the CCG would like.
“It’s really important that they get well vaccinated,” said Dr Head, who thanked volunteers for the “fantastic” support they have given to the vaccination programme, which has led to 1.1 million jabs being administered in the CCG area.
Work by the Office for National Statistics found vaccine hesitancy has reduced, but still persists.
The message from the CCH remains clear: more people need to get vaccinated to drive down Cambridge and Peterborough’s infection rates and reduce the numbers that need treatment in hospital.