Family of grandfather, 91, with Covid fear he caught virus from PEN
Family of grandfather, 91, who is battling Covid in hospital after not leaving his house for a year fear he caught the virus from a PEN he used to fill out form as he received vaccine
- Peter Short, 91, from Walsall, left his home for first time in a year to get vaccine
- Just days later the retired ITV engineer became seriously ill, positive with Covid
- Family believe he caught virus off a pen at vaccination hub in Bloxwich, Walsall
The family of a 91-year-old grandfather who is in hospital with Covid-19 fear he may have caught the deadly virus from a pen at a vaccination centre.
Peter Short had not left his home in Bloxwich, Walsall, West Midlands, since last February before he was invited to have the Pfizer-BioNtech injection last month.
The retired ITV engineer, who famously switched on the channel when it first went on air in 1955, became seriously ill three days later.
His son, who has been shielding since last year, drove him to the vaccination hub at Bloxwich Active Living Centre in Walsall on January 13.
Peter Short, 91, (pictured with one of his grandchildren) had not left his home in Walsall since last February when he was invited to have the Pfizer-BioNtech injection last month
Mr Short’s granddaughter Emma Loundes says the only thing he touched which he had not seen staff sanitise was a pen he was given to fill out his details on an official form.
On January 16 he was rushed to Walsall Manor Hospital where he tested positive for the disease.
The NHS says symptoms typically show within 5-6 days but in some cases they have been known to appear in as little as two days.
Ms Loundes, 36, a manufacturing purchaser, said: ‘He was a perfectly healthy gentleman until now and had been shielding for a year and has now got it.
Mr Short’s granddaughter Emma Loundes says the only thing he touched which he had not seen staff sanitise was a pen he was given to fill out his details on a form. Pictured: Mr Short
Peter Short with his family. The 91-year-old is now fighting for his life in hospital after contracting Covid-19
‘He got a letter inviting him for a vaccine and he was like ‘I will go and have it done’.
‘He said he was doing his bit for the country to get back to normal.
‘My dad took my granddad to the centre and they were the only two people in the car.
‘My dad has been in isolation as well because he is on the shielding list so he’s been incredibly careful himself.
‘If he didn’t take him my granddad would have had no other way of getting to the centre.
His son, who has been shielding since last year, drove him to the vaccination hub at Bloxwich Active Living Centre in Walsall, West Midlands, (pictured) on January 13
‘My dad actually went with him into the centre and he said the only things they were sanitising were the chairs.
‘There was definitely no sanitising of the pens and the stationary.
‘They gave my granddad a piece of paper as he walked into the centre and he filled it in on a table so it wasn’t on a clipboard or anything.
‘They were not sanitising the table, just the chairs after they have had the injection.
‘A couple of days later he started being sick quite badly and my mum said that it wasn’t right so we kept an eye on him but three days later my auntie phoned and said he couldn’t get out of bed.
Mr Short (pictured with his grandchildren) is receiving oxygen in hospital while his family wait for updates but have also been warned that he may not survive
‘We phoned 999 and since then we haven’t seen him, we’ve just been phoning the hospital getting updates.
‘Granddad had the vaccination on Wednesday and by the Saturday he was in the hospital fighting for his life.
‘It’s all a bit scary and you read horror stories.
‘As his granddaughter, I’m very close to him and I’m thinking is it possible he caught the disease from the vaccination centre?
‘They’re not temperature checking when you go in and you have to fill out forms.
‘He could have well got it from picking up the pen but it’s impossible to be sure.
‘The only time he goes out to get the vaccine he ends up with Covid and in hospital and being really poorly.’
Mr Short is receiving oxygen in hospital while his family wait for updates but have also been warned that he may not survive.
Ms Loundes added: ‘He has always been very independent up until March last year.
‘We went into lockdown and he didn’t go out. The only other person he saw was my auntie as she lives with him.
‘She was put on the shielding list so they have not left the house since March.
‘Even when we went into the partial lockdowns he didn’t want to take the risk and leave his home.
‘He made that decision not to even go out walking and was instead feeding the ducks from his balcony which backs onto a canal.
‘He’s now been in hospital over a week and is on 10 litres of oxygen he did start on two litres but is has now gone up to 10.
‘The hospital have phoned my mum and talked through a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR).
‘We are a very close family so it’s all very hard at the moment.’
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