Vaccines are here.

Hope is here.

Punxsutawney Area Hospital has received its first shipment of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, an important milestone for our community. The employees of Punxsutawney Area Hospital were given the opportunity to receive the vaccine this week upon its arrival, just in time for the Christmas celebration.  “The distribution of the vaccine comes with logistical challenges with its management but the hope it brings far out weights any of these challenges.” states Thomas Moore, Pharmacist. The Moderna Vaccine has a specific preparation, storage and implementation requirements, of which are completed with dose one then repeated 28 days later with dose two.
The Punxsutawney Area Hospital assembled a Covid-19 Vaccine Team months ago in preparation for this moment, these individuals have been working with county and state officials and the guidance from the Center for Disease Control’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.  The CDC has outlined a distribution plan that is currently being implemented in our community and across the nation. The Punxsutawney Area Hospital is planning for the vaccinations of individuals listed under the Phase 1-A of the CDC vaccination plan in the coming week.  This includes Ambulance Services, Fire Department QRS, Law Enforcement, Emergency Management and 9-1-1 staff, Fire Department’s active membership, Providers Offices, Dentists, and other identified healthcare workers.
The Punxsutawney Area Hospital is committed to providing the community with the most up to date information and guidance in collaboration with the CDC and PA Department of Health and will continue to follow the distribution plan designed for this initial roll out.  There are many questions regarding when the public at large will be offered the vaccine, at the current time, there isn’t a firm timeline but the hospital is committed to support community initiatives which help to decrease the spread of Covid 19.
The vaccine team was led by two guiding principles: One, patient safety, Two, optimal stewardship of the vaccines.
“We know the importance of this gift which has been provided to our staff.  For frontline workers who have been working for nine months with the pandemic this is a welcome start to the holiday season” stated Ben Hughes, Vaccine Coordinator. The vaccine team will prepare for 2nd doses January 18th, 19th, and 20th. Once vaccinated participants will benefit from a 95% efficacy rate as reported by the CDC.