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An easy decision: COVID-19 vaccination stories

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Louis Laleye is a physiotherapist at a Royal Star & Garter care home in High Wycombe. He caught COVID-19 in March 2020 and later took part in the antibody trial. He explains his decision to take the COVID-19 vaccine.

Louis and a resident at a time before pandemic restrictions kicked in
Louis, like all care colleagues, will be hoping COVID-19 vaccinations and the maintaining of the highest standards of infection prevention control, will mean the eventual return of positive resident interactions like these. [Picture taken before pandemic restrictions]

Never not an option

I never considered not having the vaccine. In fact, I was looking forward to having it, I wanted to have it done. I’m anxious to get back to normal life as soon as possible. I had the virus back in March and I didn’t want to take the chance of getting it again and getting seriously ill, because we don’t know if you can catch it more than once.

It’s really important I have the vaccine as I know it will help protect the residents we care for, and my colleagues, once everyone has been vaccinated.

I had the vaccine along with my wife, who is also a physiotherapist. I’m a fit and healthy person, I take care of my body. I have no doubt the vaccine is safe. If I had any concerns it would be harmful to my health, I wouldn’t have had it, and neither would my wife. You always hear these scare-stories with vaccines, like you did with MMR, but I tend to steer clear of the conspiracy theories.

Louis masked up for covid-secure duty
Louis masked up for COVID-secure duty.

Protecting our residents

It will have such a big impact on the residents. Most importantly, it will help protect them, which is a good thing because it is so high risk for people of their age and vulnerability.

Even though I’ve had the vaccine, I know it’s still really important to continue following all the infection control guidance, and getting tested regularly, as we don’t know yet if the vaccine will stop us passing the virus on to others.

In time, it will also allow us to slowly return to something approaching normal, and that’s really critical for their wellbeing. You think about the impact it’s had on residents, and how they’ve not been able to see their family and friends like they would normally do.

At the moment, life is quite restrictive for them and having contact with their loved ones again will be good for their mental health. In fact, I think it will be good for everyone connected to them.

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