GEORGETOWN, Texas - It’s been almost a year since COVID-19 cut senior citizens off from most family and friends.
"It’s hard when you have to die without your children around you," said 100-year-old Annie Ziegler.
The centenarian spends her sunset at Platinum Resort, a quiet assisted living facility in Georgetown. She says the facility is great. She raves about the staff. Still, she misses her family.
"We’re waiting for the day when our family can come in and visit us and we can go out to visit them," she said. In order for that to happen Ziegler needs a COVID-19 vaccine. Like many seniors, she is still waiting for one.
"You know naturally you miss [your family.] You’ve got babies being born you don’t see them." she said.
Under current state rules, Ziegler can see just two family members one at a time, for an hour each. "It’s only an hour, and it means a lot when I get that hour with one of them," she said.
Platinum Resort director Shannan Conway says some residents and staff were vaccinated by a mobile team. But it has been tricky trying to get a team to come back to the growing facility for new residents like Ziegler. "I think they’re learning the process. So, we’re not able to give answers to our families when their loved ones are going to get vaccinated," said Conway.
Williamson County is receiving approximately 8,000 vaccines a week. Jen Stratton, communications director for Family Hospital Systems, the county’s vaccine provider, says more than 23,000 people have been vaccinated in the past three weeks. "The biggest thing that we’re asking folks is please remain patient," she said.
In the meantime, Ziegler says she "can’t complain." She tries to make the most of this time playing cards, participating in bible study, and even dancing with staff. "We just want our residents to know even though their loved ones can't be here for them, we’re here for them," said Conway.
Senior citizens living on their own must register for the vaccine online. They will be contacted when they have received an appointment.