Ryman team members and their families arrived on four wheels to the Ryman Healthcare Christchurch office on Thursday, getting a temporary drive-through vaccination centre off to a roaring start.
Given level 4, what has been very quiet business park, located off Russley Road, sprang back to life, as the arriving Ryman staff joined a queue of cars, that ebbed and flowed as vaccinations were given.
There were guests too, as members of the Canterbury Rugby women's squad (who compete in the Farah Palmer Cup), turned up for a jab - invited because there were doses left, ready to be used rather than wasted.
So overall the day was very busy as fellow Rymanians worked to help each other to protect against the delta and other variations of the virus. Ryman has 50 trained vaccination nurses who have also been carrying out vaccine programmes for other retirement care operators and DHBs.
Operations Clinical and Quality Manager Karen Lake said the relationship with the Canterbury District Health Board in general and in the instance of setting up the ‘drive through’ COVID vax centre was very positive.
The Pfizer vials had been collected from the Christchurch Hospital pharmacy, and gave Ryman the capacity to deliver 280 individual doses at the Airport Business Park location.
Lisa Marr, one of Ryman’s Resident Relations team, visited Ryman Christchurch before midday with her husband Court. Lisa said she’d heard about the opportunity to get a jab from Ryman’s ChattR communication channel.
The drive-through, follows closely on the Ryman vaccination team was visiting six villages in the Christchurch region yesterday. Even ahead of those ‘mop up’ sessions, more than 92% of Ryman’s residents and 88% of staff had been vaccinated.
Operations Clinical Advisor Caroline Skegg said it had been wonderful to see very high acceptance of the vaccines within the Ryman world. “A lot of staff are bringing through their children today, which is great to see … it’s a good opportunity to start vaccinating childen.”
Karen said a wealth of support had been given by DHBs. “They’ve supported us to provide vaccinations to our people, and they have also asked us to vaccinate other retirement villages…
“We have a really strong relationship with the DHB where we’re mutually committed to vaccinating.”
Ryman is also using saliva testing for staff and Altapure de-fogging machines to decontaminate spaces.
Since April 2020 taking part in our vaccination programme has been a requirement in Ryman employment agreements.
Ryman Healthcare is New Zealand’s largest retirement village operator. We have 43 retirement villages in New Zealand and Australia. Ryman villages are home to 12,750 residents, and the company employs 6,300 staff.