Concern as elderly left out in the cold in wait for vaccine

Concern as elderly left out in the cold in wait for vaccine
Vaccination (stock image)

The 80-year-old, who wishes not to be named, says he received his injection at the Masonic Hall in St John’s Road last Thursday [January 14].

It is one of a number of locations offering the jab in the town as part of the national programme to vaccinate the top four priority groups, including health and social care workers, the over 70s, care home residents and the clinically vulnerable.

But the resident, who was informed he was to get the jab from his GP, says elderly people are being forced to wait outside in the cold and rain as they queue up for their jabs.

“When I turned up for my appointment at 9.10am there were already people waiting. Some were in wheelchairs and they had to wait there for around 20 minutes before they were let in,” he said. “It was cold and raining so that wasn’t acceptable.”

He added that the vaccine rollout was ‘impressive’ but patients lacked any clear information as to what was happening.

“You go in and fill this form in, and then they give you this raffle ticket before sending you to this big hall where you just sit and wait until it is your turn. But there is nobody there you can ask questions of. It is very daunting,” he said.

He says after the jab, patients are told to sit and wait for 15 minutes before being allowed to go home.

“I suppose this is in case we have a funny turn, but nothing is explained. I just think considering we are talking about elderly people that they should make it a bit more personal. At least have somebody there to explain what is going on,” he added.

Kent and Medway CCG who responsible for the vaccine rollout in Tunbridge Wells have been asked for comment.

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