Mobile vaccine unit allows seniors at Perth Amboy building to get COVID-19 shot
Senior citizens have been having issues getting to COVID-19 vaccine sites or making appointments ever since the vaccines began rolling out. Many have been having tech issues or no access to technology at all to make appointments.
But the seniors at the Wesley Hansen Apartments in Perth Amboy rolled up their sleeves on Wednesday to get their first shots of the Moderna vaccine – a step closer to getting back to their normal lives.
“I feel good. I feel so happy,” says resident Olga Guzman.
Guzman is one of 124 residents at the senior complex who received the shot. She says that the first thing she plans to do is to hug and kiss her family members.
The Perth Amboy Housing Authority collaborated with the Jewish Renaissance Medical Center and the city to bring a mobile vaccine center to those most in need.
“These residents, many of them don’t get out on their own. Some of them are housebound and this way they don’t have to worry about catching a virus or being exposed to viruses because it’s getting scary,” says Perth Amboy Housing Authority chairman Dorothy Carty-Daniel.
The mobile vaccine center will be visiting multiple places.
“We’re able to go mobile, so we’ll be visiting multiple places like this housing authority building throughout the next couple of months, providing vaccines to seniors,” says Jewish Renaissance Medical Center CEO John T. O’Leary.
Residents at the senior complex were contacted by phone to help with the registration process. They were not required to get the vaccine if they did not want to.
“It’s up to the seniors themselves if they want to get the vaccine. We do offer it to everybody that lives in the building,” says Jewish Renaissance Medical Center Chief Medical Officer Dr. Cynthia Vittonet.
Perth Amboy Mayor Helmin Caba says that he has heard many concerns from his constituents about accessing the vaccine.
“Availability of the vaccines has been a concern for many, not only in Perth Amboy, but throughout the nation. It’s not trickling down the way everybody would like it to,” he says. “We have faith that the proper authorities…would provide the vaccines that are necessary. We just need to continue to be proactive.”
Perth Amboy officials say that they are at the mercy of the state and the number of vaccine doses that they can give out. They say that there still aren’t enough doses to vaccinate every senior in need.