Army of volunteers pitch in to deliver more than 3,000 Covid jabs at Portsmouth clinic

SCORES of volunteers helped deliver thousands of Covid vaccinations at a city medical practice.

Thursday, 1st April 2021, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 6th April 2021, 9:13 am
Volunteers at Portsdown Portsdown Group Practice's Kingston Crescent Surgery in North End at its Covid vaccination centre. Left to right: David Griffiths, Charles Mcintosh, Julia Lynn and Vicki Luke

Portsdown Group Practice gave 3,704 vaccinations at its Kingston Road vaccination hub, thanks to its army of volunteers.

This included veterans and members of the local community who helped last weekend.

Their work has been praised by the practice – but the volunteers said they were only too happy to play their part.

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Operations administrator Ian Cummings said: ‘Sincerest thanks from the partners and all at Portsdown Group Pracitce for the fantastic effort from our volunteers.

‘They were absolutely integral in assisting us over the two days.'

Vicki Luke, who lives in Alverstoke and served in the Royal Navy for 16 years, was among those who pitched in.

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She said: ‘I have been working from home now for 12 months, therefore when I saw the request for veterans to help out I viewed this as a wonderful opportunity to do something positive in the fight against Covid.

‘I have found the experience of being able to work alongside dedicated healthcare professionals and fellow veterans both humbling and inspirational.’

David Hammond, who lives in Horndean and served for 22 years in the Royal Marines, was also there.

He said: ‘My day job is running a charity, and members of my family have been called back into the NHS, during the current pandemic, therefore I thought it was only right that I step up and help and contribute in any way I can.’

Eddie Rae, who lives in Baffins and served in the British Army for 35 years, said: ‘I volunteered because I wanted to get behind the effort, and I have been truly humbled by the attitude and stoicism of the over 80s cohort who have been coming through today to receive their second jab.’

And Bill Marshall, who lives in Locks Heath and served in the RAF for 29 years, said he believed it was the right thing to do.

‘The more people who help the quicker we will get this done,’ he said.

‘As a military veteran I believe volunteering was the right thing to do.’

It was not all veterans or serving military helping our, Denise Thomas, who lives in Lovedean, is a military wife.

Denise said: ‘As someone who worked in the NHS for 40 years, I simply had to offer my services, to provide assistance in any way I could.’

Nicola Ellis, a retired community matron from Horndean, was also on hand. She has been working the Covid clinics at Kingston Crescent since the turn of the year.

As was Izzy Krys, the daughter of one of the practice’s doctors, and Southsea resident Sarah Hill, David Griffiths, Charles Mcintosh, Julia Lynn, plus many others.

Portsdown Group Practice runs surgeries in Kingston Crescent, Crookhorn Lane, Paulsgrove, Cosham Park, Somerstown and Heyward Road.

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