December 23, 2020
Oak Hill Hospital ICU Nurse Karen McDonald received the hospital’s first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. Oak Hill Hospital received its first shipment of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine on December 22 and began vaccinating its caregivers deemed highest risk on December 23. The Moderna vaccine received the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) emergency use authorization (EUA) on Friday, December 18 and is the second vaccine to receive this approval.
“Our caregivers have continued providing the highest level of care for our patients during this pandemic and their safety is, and has been, our highest priority,” said Oak Hill Hospital’s Chief Executive Officer, Mickey Smith. “Providing the COVID-19 vaccine to these caregivers now, as positive COVID-19 cases rise and the anticipated second wave in our area increases, helps us protect them even further. Or caregivers have had incredible strength to continue during this extremely difficult year, and we want to thank them for all they have done and continue to do for our patients and our community.”
The vaccine is being distributed to caregivers based on a CDC-recommended tiering structure of COVID-19 exposure risk. The vaccine is optional for all caregivers. As additional supplies of the vaccine are received, the tiering process will continue until all caregivers who want the vaccine receive it.
“We know that wearing a mask, social distancing, and frequent proper handwashing are still key to slowing the spread of COVID-19,” said David Paul Slovut, Chief Medical Office. “Now on top of that, we have the vaccine to build our caregivers’ immunity and help prevent them from contracting this deadly disease. We need our caregivers to be here, because they are the ones who are truly saving the lives of so many others.”
The Moderna vaccine can be stored in standard hospital refrigeration systems and so it can be shipped directly to hospitals. Like the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine, it also requires two doses to provide the best protection against COVID-19.
For more information, visit our vaccine info page and click on the “Vaccine Information” tab in the “Our COVID-19 Response” center.