More than 200 local first responders have received COVID vaccine, although some so have taken wait-and-see approach
More than 200 first responders and health care workers in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccinations, which includes more than half of the Rockingham County Sheriff’s employees.
Yes, we have lots of questions about how Harrisonburg will emerge on the other side of this pandemic. But there’s a lot more to ponder in the new year as well.
After the Monday night arrival of a first shipment of Pfizer’s COVID vaccine at Sentara RMH, Mark Nesbit, an emergency medicine doctor, volunteered to get his shot right away. He didn’t realize until he arrived at the hospital’s employee health clinic on Thursday morning, however, that he would be the very first person at the hospital to receive it.
Anticipating that the first COVID-19 vaccines will be administered locally in the next several weeks, the Virginia Department of Health is working with hospitals and healthcare associations to plan the initial distribution. According to Dr. Laura Kornegay, director of the VDH’s Central Shenandoah Health District, several criteria still must be met before people begin receiving vaccines. One is a final Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration for two vaccines produced by the pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna
“The basics of emergency response, having mechanisms in place locally for continuity of operations and having setups where folks are familiar with command structures and how to respond to emergencies, are things health care providers train for constantly,” said Dr. Laura Kornegay, director of the Central Shenandoah Health District, during an hour-long telephone interview with The Citizen.