This last edition of our newsletter for 2020 is bringing good news — we have received our first shipment of Covid19 vaccines in the office and are starting the process of getting folks vaccinated!
The rollout of the vaccines is following a fairly strict, phased program of priority as dictated by the State Department of Health. We must follow these guidelines for scheduling and administering the shots, and so are asking our clinic members to please be patient.
We have been closely watching the development of the presently-approved vaccines, paying attention to all of the available scientific data regarding safety and efficacy. The clinic is currently administering the Moderna vaccine, which looks to be remarkably safe. Dr. Crandell and staff have received round 1 of the 2 immunizations, with the next dose scheduled four weeks out. We hope that all of our patients will choose to be vaccinated because everyone’s wellbeing depends on herd immunity from Covid19..
We will be reaching out to patients over the coming weeks to schedule vaccinations as the rollout moves into its successive phases. Phase 1a prioritizes healthcare workers and first responders; we are participating in the community effort to offer the vaccines to any who are in this category. Phase 1b consists of individuals at risk of severe Covid (for example, those with diabetes, heart conditions, or COPD) and their caregivers or in-home family members, as well as residents in group housing facilities. Phase 2 of the rollout includes teachers, other essential workers, and people with moderate-risk medical conditions. Phase 3 includes workers with increased exposure risk, and young adults. Lastly, phase 4 includes anyone not covered in the prior 3 phases. We anticipate that there will be sufficient vaccine available to make sure that anyone who wants to get it can eventually do so.
If you are unsure of which phase you will fall into, you are welcome to reach out to us for clarification.
While there is reason for optimism and excitement around the protection and the promise that these vaccines are offering, we remind our members to not lose sight of the fact that we are in the midst of a nationwide surge in Covid cases, with the numbers of new infections and deaths breaking new records, then breaking them again. It will be several months before enough people are vaccinated to achieve some assurance of safety.
Nevertheless, it is with a sense of hope that we close the door on 2020 and move forward into the coming year. We believe that this pandemic will soon be in our collective rear-view mirror.