1 February 2021

The following information is from our partners at The Robert HJones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH)

A proud Shropshire nurse has spoken of her joy at being able to give a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to her Healthcare Assistant nephew.

Rebecca Warren with her nephew Sam Hand

Rebecca Warren is Clinical Lead Nurse at the hospital hub at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH), near Oswestry, which is run in partnership with the North Shropshire Primary Care Network.

And she was delighted to be on shift when her nephew Sam Hand – a frontline health worker for The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) – was booked in for his first jab.

Rebecca said she was “over-the-moon” to be able to vaccinate Sam.

She said: “I feel beyond proud that I’ve vaccinated my nephew. When I found out he was booked in for his vaccine on Wednesday, there was no real way of guaranteeing that I’d be free to vaccinate him at the time of his appointment, so when it worked out that I was, I was absolutely over-the-moon.

“We’re an extremely close family, and nursing runs in our blood. I’m a Nurse, my nan was, my brother is a Ward Manager at SaTH. My sister is also a Healthcare Assistant at SATH and now her son/my nephew, Sam is. I’m so proud of him, and I know our beloved Gramps – our grandad – would be so proud of us all.

“I would say I’m certainly a contender for aunty of the year after this!”

Rebecca said her giving the vaccine to Sam also sends an “important message” to those “dubious” about getting vaccinated.

She said: “For those who are concerned about the efficacy of the vaccine, as well as overall safety and side effects, please trust us, we are your NHS. I am a proud NHS Nurse and wouldn’t consider giving this vaccine to my own flesh and blood if it wasn’t safe. Please trust the experts.”

Twenty-two year-old, Sam, who works on Ward 33 and 34 – the Surgical Assessment Unit at SaTH, said: “I’m thrilled to have my vaccine and would’ve trusted any NHS professional to give me the jab – but it just so happened that my Aunty Becky was free to do so at the time, which was an added bonus for us both.

“I would encourage anyone who gets contacted by the NHS to offer them their vaccine to go ahead and get it done. Trust the NHS, the vaccine is our route back to normality.”

Since opening at the beginning of January, the hub based at RJAH, has initially been offering the vaccine to people aged 80 and over, as well as to health and social care staff.

People will be contacted when they are eligible for the vaccine. In the meantime, patients are being asked not to contact their GP or the hospitals and should wait to receive a letter or phone call inviting them to book their appointment.

Local people continue to be asked to do everything they can to stop the spread of the virus, by following government guidance and adhering to the lockdown restrictions now in place.