Caterham nursing home becomes first in region to vaccinate all residents against Covid-19


Tupwood Gate Nursing Home, part of Cygnet Health Care, has become the first nursing home in East Surrey to vaccinate its residents.

All residents at the Caterham home were vaccinated on Thursday, January 7th, after Tupwood Gate’s Matron Sue Stepney and Deputy Matron Paula Deadman signed up to join the Alliance for Better Care vaccination team, which is delivering the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme across East Surrey and Mid-Sussex.

Sue and Paula completed a course in both the Pfizer and Astra-Zeneca vaccines and have been delivering the vaccine to members of the public across East Surrey eligible for the jab since before Christmas, putting in shifts at vaccination centres in the local area. Sue has been working at the Canon Centre and both have carried out vaccinations at Westway in Caterham, with Sue now having delivered over 1,000 vaccinations.

As part of the programme, they were able to personally facilitate the vaccinations of residents and staff at Tupwood Gate Nursing Home. In doing so, it became the first nursing home in East Surrey to vaccinate its residents.

Sue says she is proud to be able to help. “It means the world to give time to something so worthwhile,” she said. “The vaccination programme will hopefully lead to the end of lockdown, save lives and bring a return to normality.

“I hope that I have also helped people to understand the virus more and the importance of the steps we all still need to take together to get through this pandemic.”

Sarah Billiald, CEO of First Community Health and Care has thanked Sue on Twitter and one local GP described Sue as a “true gem”, praising her “professionalism and friendliness.”

Tupwood Gate provides care for residents over 50 requiring short stay or long-term care, and also offers post-operative or convalescent care and end-of-life care. Some residents may have a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Based in a grand former diplomat’s family residence, Tupwood Gate, is rated Good in all areas by the regulator, the Care Quality Commission.

Alliance for Better Care is a not-for-profit GP federation that unites more than 40 GP practices within the East Surrey and Mid-Sussex region and is helping to deliver the Covid-19 vaccination Programme. A month after the first vaccination site at Saxonbrook in Crawley, it has vaccinated 15,000 patients in across 6 sites. The organisation is working on adapting a roving model to get out to more care homes.

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