Ngaio Marsh Retirement village residents and staff turned up in droves today to a pop-up COVID-19 vax centre, with some parts of the Papanui village now at 100 per cent vaccinated.
The mopping up vaccination visit by a Ryman vax team, drew in some of the more hesitant residents to get their COVID protection. Staff in the waiting queue were only too pleased to help protect themselves and the village from the virus.
One of the residents, receiving his first Pfizer boost today, Ken Washington said he felt comfortable ahead of getting the jab from Rishi Mangalat. Rishi was taking on the ‘vaccination nurse’ role from his usual position as Unit Coordinator at Charles Upham village.
Village Manager Anna Thomson said residents had been very keen to be part of the vaccination programme. “We had one man who did a jig, he was so excited he got his vaccine. So that’s fantastic.
“I think that people just feel very positive about it. They’re really thrilled to have the opportunity to have it here in the village,” Anna said.
In terms of the village breakdown, 100 per cent of the serviced apartment residents had received the vaccine.
“And within the wider residents (including independent and care centre residents) we’ve got extremely high uptake.”
More than 90 per cent of staff had received the vaccine. The staff felt very supported and secure being able to get the doses from trained Ryman staff, able to deliver the jabs. They also felt they were protecting the residents, fellow staff members and their families, Anna said.
Ngaio Marsh Serviced Apartment Caregiver Abby Power said she got a call up this morning saying she had the opportunity to come in and get vaccinated, ahead of her normal evening shift.
She welcomed the chance. “I thought I may as come now, because the lines are really big at the outside (vaccination centres)…
“I’m a bit nervous, but I’ll get it over and done with, I guess.”
Operations Clinical Advisor Caroline Skegg said the Ryman vaccination team was visiting six villages in the Christchurch region today including Essie Summers, Anthony Wilding and Charles Upham village in Rangiora. Overall Ryman was getting towards 90 per cent of residents in Christchurch vaccinated, which compared very favourably to national vaccination levels.
During level 4 there are full infection control procedures in place at Ryman villages. Care staff are wearing face shields and N95 masks and caring for residents in bubbles.
More than 32,000 vaccinations have been delivered.
This series of mop up clinics included opening up the vaccination process to the residents, their next-of-kin, the staff and their families, Caroline said. “There are some people that haven’t been eligible or need a second dose. We’re just wanting to make sure they’re fully covered.
“It’s great. We know what to do now, so we just get in and do it,” Caroline said. The reaction from residents had been really positive. “Now, sometimes we’re getting down to vaccine-hesitant people and people who are needle-phobic and things. We’re making sure we have the right support for them, in the right environment, because they need to feel comfortable getting their vaccine.”
The team planned to offer the jabs to children of staff members, tomorrow, at a special drive-through clinic. The drive-through was a first for Ryman, Caroline said.
Ryman has 50 trained vaccination nurses who have also been carrying out vaccine programmes for other retirement care operators and DHBs.