Meet Dr Langdon, one of our Covid-19 superheroes!
It has been a year on since the vaccination programme first started, and looking back, so much of what we have achieved would not be possible without the outstanding efforts of our people across the Frimley Health and Care Integrated Care System. Be they vaccinators, volunteers or managers behind the scenes, people have been working day and night to ensure the vaccine is in the right place at the right time, and supporting our local residents to take up the offer and stay protected.
One of these such people is retired GP, Dr Jennifer Langdon.
Dr Langdon has been a GP in Maidenhead for 33 years, retired in 2014 and went on to work in South America and Africa with Vine Trust Charity. With news of the pandemic spreading, Dr Langdon returned to her family in Berkshire in February 2020, with the hope to returning to her voluntary work by Easter, but of course things never really returned to the way they were.
When Dr Langdon heard about the vaccine programme roll-out, she put her name back on the register and offered to return to work. The very next day, Dr Langdon was at a Vaccinator Training session, and a few days later, began working as a Covid-19 volunteer vaccinator. This just highlights the pace at which the programme took off! What makes Dr Langdon stand out is that she made it clear that she didn’t want to be paid for her work, because she was here to help as much as she could. Dr Langdon loved working abroad, but couldn’t because of the travel restrictions, so she would do what she could here.
Dr Langdon has always kept an interest in medicine and is passionate about her job. Dr Langdon comments that “Working as a Covid-19 vaccinator has been so rewarding. We started on 21st December and worked until Christmas eve. Patients were overwhelming grateful and often in tears. People were so thankful to have a way out of the pandemic and begin to feel safe.
“On my 71st birthday, I worked 8am-6pm and vaccinated about 130 people against flu and Covid-19 as I did care home visits protecting staff and residents. It’s been quite a journey and one that I am immensely proud of!
“Earlier in the year my colleague and I were stopped by armed police while doing a home visit! It was after 5pm and we had been delayed earlier in the day at a patient’s home, so we were working beyond 5pm on a cold and dark wintry evening. The police wanted to check that we were legitimately moving vaccine! Thankfully, we had our proof of identify and explained what we were doing, and it wasn’t long until those same police officers were coming to us to get their jabs!
“I was also part of the team that did outreach to the homeless community across RBWM. We took the vaccine to people where they were rather than expecting them to come to us. We are still visiting them for booster jabs, and still finding people who need their first dose. We try not to leave people unprotected.”
Dr Edward Harrison, Clinical Director for the Windsor Primary Care Network responsible for the Windsor Yards vaccination site has commented that “Dr Langdon has been our rock throughout the programme and has helped us reach members of the community across Windsor. She has such a wonderfully positive manner about her, and we truly feel privileged to have her as part of our team. Being an experienced GP, not only does Dr Langdon work as a vaccinator, but she also covers as Clinical Lead on the site when needed. This means we always have more than adequate cover to run the vaccination site, and even increase the capacity, as we know that we can rely on Dr Langdon to support in this role as well. Everyone at the Windsor Yards vaccination site is extremely grateful for Dr Langdon’s exceptional support in rolling out the Covid-19 vaccination programme.”
For the generation aged over 20 years old, Dr Langdon noted that travel was the biggest motivation to get vaccinated, but is grateful for people coming in, no matter what brought them through the door. “I am most impressed with the 12+ age group. They are so well informed about their decision to get vaccinated against Covid-19.”
“Overall it has been a wonderful positive experience, and I am very proud of being part of it all. I would love to return to Africa, but it has been lovely to be able to continue working here during this time and I hope to continue to be involved as long as I can. When I need to, I will step down – I already have 6 grandchildren with another on the way, but I am the kind of person who tries not to miss out on anything and I have been extremely fortunate to be in this position!”
The Frimley Health and Care Integrated Care System would like to extend our thanks to everyone who has played a role in the Covid-19 vaccination programme, but a special ‘thank you’ to Dr Langdon who has played such an exceptional role in delivering the vaccine to so many residents, in a safe and effective manner.