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Vaccination joy at Cherry Tree Court

Staff and residents at Cherry Tree Court have been speaking of their joy after the retirement living team supported a local surgery to create a pop-up vaccination centre for its patients.

Two medical staff from the Essington Medical Centre visited Cherry Tree Court, where the communal lounge – currently closed during lockdown – was turned into a socially distanced vaccination facility benefiting almost 40 residents.

Manager Kath explained that residents registered with the practice were telephoned by the surgery the previous day and offered an appointment.

“We set up ten chairs in the lounge, carefully positioning them to ensure social distancing. We operated a one-way system around the building and made sure that lift buttons, handles and touch points were cleaned to keep people safe,” she explained.

Two of those taking advantage of the pop-up vaccination centre were husband and wife Phil and June.

“We jumped for joy when we got the call,” said Phil, who has been using lockdown to brush-up his skills on the saxophone. “We felt really lucky to have the opportunity and didn’t hesitate for a second.

“The past year has been hard for all of us. I’m one of seven and I haven’t seen my family since last March. June has three children and she’s been longing to be a granny. Last year her daughter gave birth to twin boys and June still hasn’t had her first cuddle with the babies.

“We had the vaccination so that we can look forward to those special moments with our families but for the ‘everyday’ times, too. We want to be able to go out for a coffee, have a pub lunch together and do all the things we used to enjoy.”

Kath said that everyone receiving the vaccine shared Phil and June’s happiness. “It was quite an emotional day, feeling that this is the start of better times for us all,” she said.

Caption: Cherry Tree Court, the setting for the pop-up vaccination facility.