Residents and staff at care homes across Buckinghamshire are delighted to be receiving the first dose of their Covid-19 vaccine. Teams of medics have been dispatched to residential care and nursing homes across the county in recent weeks to vaccinate the people who fall into the top-most category to receive the potentially life-saving vaccine.
The Fremantle Trust operates 11 nursing and residential homes across Buckinghamshire, catering for around 700 residents and with over 1,000 employees. In the past few weeks residents have received their vaccines on site and staff have been able to get their vaccine at the hospital hub set up in Stoke Mandeville stadium and in the care homes where they work.
Sara Livadeas, Chief Executive of the Fremantle Trust said: “It’s been a very emotional weekend. Everyone across our organisation – residents, employees and families, are so excited to see this day. The long-awaited vaccine is finally here and we are able to start protecting everyone against this dreadful disease. We are thankful to the NHS and volunteers who have worked so speedily to make this happen. You don’t just need to take my word for how happy this makes us all feel, just take a look at the huge smiles on everyone’s faces.”
The government has pledged that all those in the top four priority categories will receive the first dose of their Covid-19 vaccine by 15 February. In Buckinghamshire, these four groups are all on schedule to have received their first dose within the targeted date.
Angela Macpherson, Buckinghamshire Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care said: “We are pleased to see so many of our older and vulnerable residents and the people who care for them getting their vaccines. The NHS is working around the clock to ensure that these priority groups are given protection as soon as possible. Our care homes have faced many difficult challenges during this pandemic. There are still challenges ahead but this vaccine rollout gives hope and optimism for the future. We will continue to work with all our care providers over coming weeks to prioritise the protection of all our vulnerable residents and those who care for them.”
Dr Raj Bajwa, Chair of NHS Buckinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “It is wonderful to see the vaccine now reaching so many care home residents and members of staff. There is still lots of work to be done and we must not be complacent, but this is a great cause for hope after the extremely difficult months care homes have faced.
“I would also like to praise the remarkable efforts of our GP practices and vaccination teams, who have been working tirelessly to get this vaccine out to our most vulnerable patients as quickly as possible.”