99-year-old Derbyshire Covid survivor given vaccine as roll-out gathers pace

A 99-year-old woman who survived catching Covid has been given her first dose of the vaccine.

Ivy Dawson, who turns 100 in October, contracted the disease in May last year amid the first wave of the pandemic.

However, fortunately she recovered and has now been given a dose of the Oxford AstraZeneca jab as part of the county’s vaccination effort.

Experts say that, as they do not yet know the exact reinfection rate for Covid, it is wise for anyone who has had it to still get vaccinated.

Ivy, who has lived at Goyt Valley House Care Home in New Mills, said she was delighted to get the vaccine.

“Being here is the next best thing to being at home and I hope the vaccine means we can soon move forward,” she said.

She is one of many people living in Derbyshire’s care homes being given the jab, with vaccinations beginning at her home on Monday, January 11.

Cheryl Hudson is unit manager at Goyt Valley House, said it was a relief to see them begin.

“We’re all so glad this day has arrived,” she said.

“It means so much to us, particularly the residents and their families.

“It’s been a very difficult time for everyone, and I know things won’t be back to normal for a while, but this is such a ray of hope for us all.”

Other care homes in the county have been given the Pfizer BioNTech vaccines, such as The Leys in Ashbourne, which began giving them to residents on New Year’s Day.

As a frontline care worker, Juanita Wheeldon, manager of The Leys, was vaccinated on the same day as the residents.

Jean Holt, 93, received her first jab at The Leys in Ashbourne on New Year’s Day
(Image: Derbyshire County Council)

“I am extremely proud of my staff, who have shown the utmost commitment to caring for our residents throughout this pandemic, taking additional shifts, sacrificing leave and time spent with their families to provide care for our residents,” she said.

“It has been a difficult time for all and particularly for the families of our residents as all the care in the world does not replace the embrace of a loved one.

“While we will continue to wear all the necessary PPE and follow all infection control measures for some time to come, I hope the vaccination will bring us back to normality as soon as possible.”

Councillor Jean Wharmby, cabinet member for Adult Care at Derbyshire County Council, said she was pleased to see the vaccine being rolled out.

“These are momentous times for our residents, who are among the most vulnerable in Derbyshire,” she said.

“Getting the vaccine now is a tribute to the hard work, dedication and brilliance of everyone involved, including our own staff who are supporting their colleagues in the NHS to make this happen.

“I hope this giant step will help bring a more normal way of life nearer and ensure we can be reunited with our loved ones as soon as we can.

“I’d like to pay tribute to our colleagues in the NHS as well as our own care staff for working tirelessly to deliver the vaccine programme.

“The vaccine is a shining light at the end of a long tunnel and I’d encourage everyone to take it up when it’s offered.”

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