Volunteers at Portslade’s new vaccination centre say helping people get their covid jabs has been an emotional and heartwarming experience.
The Portslade Health Centre Vaccination Centre opened this month and has already vaccinated almost 5,000 elderly patients from local GP practices and care homes.
As well as medics, the centre is staffed by dozens of volunteers helping out on reception, car park stewarding, queue management and administration.
One, Caroline Frazer, said: “I have overheard patients express how relieved they are now that they have had the vaccine. They are also commenting on how well run and efficient the practice is. It has been heart-warming to hear them plan for the future.”
Another, Jeanette Stone, said: “It is lovely to hear all the positive comments from the people coming to have the vaccination. Some of the more elderly are so pleased to have some protection at last and there are many comments on how well organised we are.”
Caroline Wood said: “‘We are really enjoying volunteering at the Portslade Covid-19 Vaccination Centre, whether it be stewarding in the rain in the car park or inputting data in the vaccination pod. It is great to be part of a national effort to help people return to a more normal life.”
And Mark Stephenson said: “The first few days were very emotional for us as the patients were so grateful to receive the vaccine. Some had brought in cakes and biscuits as a thank you.”
The centre is being run by staff from Hove Medical Centre, Links Road Surgery, Benfield Valley Healthcare Hub, Portslade Health Centre, Wish Park Surgery, Mile Oak Medical Centre, Trinity Medical Centre, Charter Medical Centre and Brighton Health and Wellbeing Centre.
Clinical director Dr Rowan Brown said: “We would like to say a massive thank you to all of the amazing volunteers that have donated their time to help support the fight against covid-19.
“We have had a huge number of volunteers working with us to deliver the service.
“We would also like to thank all of our patients and our community for the kind thank you letters and cards sent to us and the gifts that we have received including a free lunch from a local café, gift bags from a local church group and many boxes of chocolates that we will be passing on to our volunteers.
“The Portslade Health Centre Vaccination Centre has vaccinated 3,382 patients, carers and front-line staff and over 1,000 care home patients so far.
“All the staff at the Vaccination Centre wish you health and happiness. Please know that we are working hard to support you all to return to normality.”
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