100 older adults receive flu shots at drive-through clinic

WESTFIELD – One hundred of the city’s older adults received their flu vaccination during a two-day drive-through flu shot clinic at the Westfield Senior Center.

The clinic was a joint effort of five city departments, including the Council on Aging, Police, Fire, Department of Public Works and Health Department.

According to Council on Aging Director Tina Gorman, the event was a success and was much appreciated by participants, who received a high dosage flu shot.

Following the clinic, Gorman noted that some surrounding communities partnered with pharmacies to host similar clinics, however, they were not able to offer a drive-through event.

“We are the only COA in the area that held a drive-through clinic.  And that’s because the vaccine was administered through the Health Department,” said Gorman. “The other COAs are partnering with local pharmacies and because of liability issues, most are doing them outdoors and the seniors must get out of their vehicles and get the vaccine in a designated area.”

Social distancing guidelines were followed and all volunteers wore masks. Gorman thanked those who helped make the clinic possible and successful.

“Thank you to DPW and the Fire Department for assisting with setting up the parking lot with weighted barriers, horses, and cones,” Gorman stated in an email. “Thanks to the Police Department for an officer helping participants to safely exit the parking lot onto Noble Street.  And a million thanks to the Health Department… Joe Rouse, Deb Mulvenna, Evelyn Bristol, Tommy Hibert, Steve Cipriani, and Juanita Carnes for making this one-of-a-kind in the area senior flu clinic possible.”

Gorman also offered k”udos to Council on Aging staff who assisted with scheduling, set-up, and traffic flow — Mary Cohutt, Alex Hibert, Mary Lou Niedzielski, Joanne Ortegas, Joyce Peregrin, as well as faithful and selfless volunteer, Barbara Martone.

“On behalf of Westfield’s older adults, thanks to each and every one of you!  It takes a village,” said Gorman.

This was the only planned flu clinic the COA is hosting this year.


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