West Point Community Living Center says 90 percent of residents get COVID-19 vaccine during first clinic

WEST POINT, Miss. (WCBI) – West Point Community Living Center held its first COVID-19 vaccine clinic for residents and staff on Monday and plenty at the nursing home took advantage of the opportunity.

“We’ve been waiting so long and nursing homes are hit the worst so we’re very very thankful,” said social service director Heather Parham.

A pharmacist and nursing clinician from CVS spent the day administering 80 doses of the Pfizer vaccine at the nursing home.

“They’re all smiling, they’re all excited to see each other,” Parham said. “Everybody’s speaking to each other. Being able to be around people and having that human contact is very important.”

West Point Community Living Center says close to 90 percent of their nearly 70 residents signed up to get their vaccine shots. The center was dealing with four new cases of the virus within the last few weeks after previously being COVID-free since April of 2020.

“COVID scares me,” says resident Judy Ray. “I have lung problems and I have diabetes…I’m ready to get the vaccine.”

Ray said she has been praying that the nursing home would get the vaccine, especially after all available appointments in Mississippi ran out the week before.

“We’ve had some patients in here have COVID, tested positive for it,” Ray says. “So right now, we’re not going out of our rooms. We can’t go out of the building, we can’t have visitors, so it’s been pretty rough.”

Fellow resident Richard Bell says that isolation gets old quick and was also excited to get his dose of the vaccine.

“If it works for me, I’m for it. If it works for anybody I’m for it,” he said. “So I’m going to go ahead and try it. It beats trying to get by without it. Better safe than sorry.”

About 50 to 60 percent of the staff also got their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

“I know there’s a lot of people that have been trying to get it and that are not being able to right now,” said rehabilitation director Jason Gann. “And hopefully they’ll get it to where everybody can get it very soon. Just working with a population that’s very susceptible to getting it, I’m very glad for them.”

Ray says she hopes everyone will take the vaccine so that she can see her kids and grand kids again.

“I’d tell everybody to take it because it don’t hurt or nothing,” she said. “And I think if you can do something to stop COVID, that’s what I’m going to do. That’s what we want to do.”

Staff and residents are scheduled to get their second dose on February 8th.

Parham says they will try to schedule another first round of the vaccine based on it’s availability going forward.

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