Perry Lutheran Homes holds first COVID-19 vaccine clinic

Perry Lutheran Homes staff members Jennifer Rothfus, left, and Deb Kruse hold up their COVID-19 immunization cards after receiving the vaccine Tuesday.

More than 100 residents and workers at the Perry Lutheran Homes were vaccinated Tuesday against COVID-19, with CVS Pharmacy providing the jabs at the on-site vaccine clinic, according to a statement released Wednesday by the long-term care facility.

The residents and staff members at the King’s Gardens campus on Willis Avenue signed consent forms prior to receiving their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. They will get a second dose Jan. 26.

“The atmosphere yesterday at our vaccine clinic was one of excitement shared by both residents and staff,” said Melissa Gannon, chief operating officer and administrator at the Perry Lutheran Homes. “It is such a joy to know we will get back to living and caring in a more normal way. 2020 was a long and difficult year, but residents, resident families and staff really pulled together to support one another, and we are overjoyed with the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine.”

Gannon said this vaccine will allow residents to again enjoy social time, group activities, in-person visitors and other activities. COVID-19 has had a mortality rate of 80% in adults 65 and older, so this vaccine will protect older adults as they get back to living a more normal life, she said.

Residents and staff at the Spring Valley Campus are scheduled for a COVID-19 vaccine clinics Jan. 11 and Feb. 1. The Perry Lutheran Homes is working with Walgreens Pharmacy to schedule vaccine clinics at the Eden Acres campus, formerly known as the Rowley Masonic Community.

Gannon said that all of the vaccine distribution regulations and timelines are set by federal and state health agencies, and the Perry Lutheran Homes continues working hand-in-hand with these health agencies to vaccinate all residents and staff.

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine has been found to be 94% effective in preventing individuals from contracting the virus. The goal of the vaccine is to expose the body to an antigen that does not cause disease but provokes an immune response that can block or kill the virus. There is no charge for the vaccine or its administration.

For more information about the vaccine, review the Omnicare fact sheet. There is no waitlist or cost for the vaccine.

The public should beware of scams related to the COVID-19 vaccine. Never give out any personal or financial information.

“There is a lot of false information out there about the vaccine,” according to Amanda Cregeen, infection preventionist at Perry Lutheran Homes. “When it comes to the protection of our elderly population, the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh any negatives. It will not only benefit residents’ physical health by preventing a COVID-19 infection, but their mental health should improve drastically as they socialize and enjoy activities with other residents, and have in-person visits from friends, family, church and community. With the vaccine, we are hoping that this pandemic becomes a thing of the past.”


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