VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The head of a senior living community in Virginia Beach said its reached "herd immunity" among residents.
President and CEO of Westminster-Canterbury on Chesapeake Bay, Ben Unkle said everyone who lives there, except one person, received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“We’re a picture of what it looks like in the future when all of us get enough vaccine that we have herd immunity," Unkle said. “We’ve got 100 percent of independent living residents vaccinated.”
According to Unkle, only one person refused the shot, a 95-year-old woman living in the skilled nursing section. He said, “She’d never had a vaccine in her life, and she said she wasn’t going to start now.”
He explained that having nearly everyone who lives there fully vaccinated, helps make everyone feels more secure.
“It’s euphoric," Unkle said. "People feel safe, they feel relaxed, they feel free to interact with each other without any fear or consequence.”
Resident John Wolfe agreed.
“You know this herd immunity in the population in general they say only happens once you get to 70 or 80% vaccinated but here where we’re essentially 100%, we really do feel much more confident that we’re going to be able to avoid the serious consequences of COVID-19,” Wolfe said.
Wolfe has lived at Westminster-Canterbury for about five years. He got his second shot, two weeks ago.
Wolfe said everyone is still taking precautions, understanding this doesn’t mean it’s impossible to test positive.
Also since everyone has always been free to leave campus.
“We’re all still wearing masks because we think that’s the right thing to do but we feel much better now that we’ve had the vaccine," Wolfe said. “There’s a real feeling of relief here on campus. You can almost sense it, an air of a new start.”