Meet our festive vaccinators!
Our Covid-19 vaccination clinics are offering walk-in slots for first, second and booster vaccines for adults (18+) until 30 December. Meet a few of our friendly (and festive!) vaccinators from Hammersmith Hospital. Be sure to check our clinic hours and find out when you can come in to get the jab.
When did you become a vaccinator?
Niamh: Normally, I’m an intensive care nurse, but I'm currently the clinical co-ordinator for the Hammersmith Hospital vaccination hub. I’ve been supporting the vaccination effort since June.
Judith: I’ve been a dentist for 33 years, at the same practice for 25, so I felt ready for a change! I became a vaccinator in March and worked at a mass vaccination site before coming to Hammersmith.
Maria: I’m a pharmacist in primary care and I’ve been vaccinating since March.
How have you found it?
Judith: It’s incredibly rewarding! I always enjoyed working with patients so I’m happy to have the chance to see so many people through this role. You can learn so much about people in just a five-minute conversation.
I feel especially humbled when I speak to immunocompromised people who come to have their vaccines. Vaccines have been a lifeline for these people and it is a privilege to help.
Niamh: We have an amazing team from all different disciplines. It’s a rich environment – we're all learning from each other and from our patients.
Maria: It feeds our professions in different ways. Coming from a primary care background, I feel fortunate to have had this chance to gain so much insight into a secondary care environment. And of course, to meet so many different people.
What can people expect when they come to our vaccination clinics?
Niamh: People who are happy to have the vaccine can get in and out very quickly – we have a very smooth process and plenty of space at our sites so it doesn’t feel crowded. But we also take time for patients who want to ask questions before they make their decision.
Judith: We’re here to provide vaccinations to those who want it, and information to those who want to learn more before they decide whether to get it. We will never pressure anyone to get the vaccine and we’ll never judge anyone who comes to us with questions.
Maria: We each have a cubicle so everyone has privacy while we’re talking or giving the jab. We also understand that people get nervous around needles and need more time. We help them take as much time as they need to prepare.
Why is it so important to get the jab?
Niamh: The vaccine is the best protection we have against severe Covid-19, though you should also wear a mask, wash your hands and socially distance as much as possible. When I’m not vaccinating, I'm an intensive care nurse and I worked all through last winter. It was so difficult for patients going through intensive care for Covid-19 – being on a ventilator, being prone on their chest, being away from the people they love. Today, most of the people in intensive care are not vaccinated. It’s worth doing everything you can to keep yourself from becoming severely ill with Covid-19.
Is there anything else you want people to know?
Judith: We have a friendly (and festive!), non-judgmental team here to welcome you, whether you need your first, second or booster jab.
Maria: Every patient is a VIP! We’ll help make this a calm, easy process for you, even if you feel nervous about getting the vaccine or you don’t like needles.
Niamh: Our team is made up of so many professionals who are giving their time because they want to help. I want to recognise our vaccinators, our volunteers and all the staff who are redirecting efforts to vaccinate our community. You are doing amazing work!
See our walk-in vaccination clinic opening hours to find out when you can get your jab.