By Reader Staff
Bonner General Health received its first doses of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination this week, specifically for frontline workers. The first six health care workers received their initial dose on Dec. 18. Employees were surveyed about whether they would like to receive the vaccine, requiring a second dose in 21 days. More doses are expected to be available in the coming weeks.
Bonner General Health received a total of 90 vaccines in its first round.
“We are grateful to be included in this first round of distribution and are encouraged and hopeful to see the vaccine more widely available to our staff and community in 2021. It’s the first step in getting control of this pandemic,” BGH CEO Sheryl Rickard stated in a news release.
ER physician Dr. Stacey Good was one of the first frontline workers at BGH to receive the vaccination.
“It feels a lot like voting. I not only see it as a right but a social responsibility. If I get COVID, statistics are on my side that I will most likely be alright. But it’s not just about me; this pandemic was never about, individuals regardless of what was portrayed,” she stated. “I’m an ER physician; my average patient age is 70. I have in-laws and parents who have bad lungs, bad aortas and bad hearts. If they get COVID, they will not do well. I have seen when people don’t do well. It’s who I take care of and what I do every day in the Emergency Department.
“There may be side effects to this vaccine,” she added. “There may be politics that I don’t support behind big pharma supplying the vaccine, but the lives of those I love and the patients I care for are more important than all those things.”
Dr. Vince Huntsberger, who directs Emergency Medicine at BGH, vouched for the safety of the vaccine, and hoped for its widespread availability, “so we can get back to our normal lives and end this pandemic.”
“I feel the vaccine is safe and very effective,” he stated. “I would strongly recommend the vaccine to all eligible people.”
For more information about the vaccine, visit the CDC website at cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19 or Panhandle Health District at panhandlehealthdistrict.org/covid-19.
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