NHS Lanarkshire apologies for incident that caused distress to the elderly

They did not deserve to be treated like this - that is the view of a daughter of an 86-year old dementia patient who was among those who faced a two-hour wait standing in the cold for their second Covid-19 jab last Thursday (April 15) outside the Muirfield Centre.

Dullatur resident Clare Ross has hit out at NHS Lanarkshire  who have now issued an apology over the wait.Her mum and  dad, who are both  86, were caught up in the  distressing incident.  

Clare who grew up in Kildrum where her parents still live said: “My dad was so confused and  almost took a ‘turn’ whilst standing there freezing.”A friend, who was with her mum, asked if the older people could come forward to save them standing in the cold but she was told her  mother was to stand in the queue like everyone else.

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”The facility in Gartcosh was apparently empty and could have taken all the people who had cars and transport. It turns out my parents could have had their vaccine at home. How were they to know that? I am absolutely disgusted and so angry this has not been made known to older people.

”After all, that’s why we’ve been home for over a year. To protect the elderly and the NHS!

”There was no protection last Thursday when they were told to stand out in the cold.” 

While not wanting to reveal the identity of her parents to avoid causing them further distress, Clare stated that her mum and dad  are typical ‘pioneers’ who came to Cumbernauld for a fresh start from Glasgow 60 years ago, raised five children here and have always stayed in the same home.   

And she fears that far too many vulnerable people in their age group  were affected by the set up last week.

 NHS Lanarkshire acknowledged  the following day that the situation had reached problem level  and said it had started an enquiry over the wait.

Commenting,  Lesley Thomson, Nurse Director, South Lanarkshire Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “We are aware of the queues at our Covid-19 vaccination clinic at Muirfield Community Centre and would like to apologise to anyone who had to wait for an unacceptable length of time to receive their vaccination.

”We are now undertaking second dose vaccinations, which is another huge undertaking and comes with its own challenges.“The delay on Thursday was due to a number of unexpected challenges.

 We are currently looking into what happened, to reduce the risk of it happening again”

“To help manage the queues people were offered an alternative clinic and we created a separate queue for people aged over 70 and provided chairs and bottled water.”We would like to thank everyone for their patience as we continue to deliver the largest ever vaccination programme.”