Mixed emotions over COVID-19 vaccine

Helicon firefighter Carson Gladney, far right, receives the COVID-19 vaccine from Lacie Frederick, RN, at the Winston County Health Department. First responders shown preparing for the vaccine are from left, Arley firefighter George Gibson, Arley Fire Chief James Rickett, Helicon firefighter Lael Feist and Helicon Assistant Fire Chief Neil Feist. Showing support to the first responders receiving vaccines is State Representative Tim Wadsworth.

WINSTON COUNTY    - Although health officials are stressing the safety of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, which is now being offered in Winston County, some first responders are approaching the vaccine with reservation.
The vaccinations are being administered at the Winston County Health Department in Double Springs and Lakeland Community Hospital in Haleyville.  Those eligible to receive these phase 1 vaccinations are first responders, frontline health workers in hospitals, nursing homes or those directly providing in-home or mental health; workers in heath care services such as those providing transportation and environmental services, as well as those in mortuary services.
Michael Glenn, assistant administrator for the northern district of the Alabama Department of Public Health, noted the Winston County Health Department received 200 doses of the Moderna vaccine, which are set aside for medical staff and first responders.
“All of the health departments will have the Moderna,” Glenn stated. “The Pfizer vaccine has to be stored at minus 80 degrees.  The Moderna can be stored in a regular freezer.”
Each vial of the Moderna vaccine contains 10 doses.
“Once we start giving them, we have to give all 10 within six hours,” Glenn stated. “We don’t want to waste any vaccine.”
Appointments at the health department are being made 15-30 minutes apart, Glenn said.
“You have to wait for at least 15 minutes after you have the shot for observation,” Glenn said. This means, vaccinations are being given in groups of five. This process also allows these vaccines  to be given so  persons receiving them can keep their six-foot social distancing, according to Glenn.


See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.
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