First vaccines received at care scheme

More than 100 vulnerable residents and care staff at Mildmays in Islington have received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

An NHS vaccine team visited the extra care scheme, in Mildmay Park, for two days last week. It has offered a light at the end of the tunnel for those at Mildmays after months of worry.

Take-up at the scheme was high, with 62 residents and 55 members of staff receiving their first dose. Their second is now due in April.

Robert East, director of care and support for Notting Hill Genesis, said: “It was quite emotional, to think about how scared people have been and how so many of us have fallen ill or lost loved ones.

“I thought of the amazing job all our staff have done throughout the pandemic and continue to do under such challenging circumstances – and now we were getting this little miracle in a syringe.”

Temilola Ajibare, care co-ordinator, said: “I’m very relieved to have had my first vaccine. I wasn’t nervous at all – it was very simple and over quickly.

I’ve seen a lot of the false information but it didn’t change my mind. I decided I would go by what I see, and I haven’t seen anything to worry about.

“Now I’m looking forward to getting back to some sort of normality. As soon as I can I’ll be booking a holiday – a trip to Dubai after mine was cancelled last year.”

Fellow care co-ordinator Freda Nkansah was the first member of staff at Mildmays to receive the injection.

She said: “Even though I went first I wasn’t nervous. I’d had Covid over Christmas and I’m pleased to have now had the vaccine so I know I am going to be more protected.

“My arm hurts a bit, but it’s not bad and you can get that with the flu vaccine.

“I come from Ghana and I’m looking forward to going to see my mum as soon as I can.”

Resident Jean Curtis, who has lived at Mildmays for 10 years, added: “I was very happy to get the vaccine. It was a bit painful and my arm aches but it’s ok. I will get the next dose in April and then I’ll be all done.”

Notting Hill Genesis is encouraging all staff to get vaccinated against Covid-19 as soon as they are offered the opportunity, both to protect themselves and to ensure we can get safely back out into our communities as quickly as possible.