EDINBURG, Texas (KVEO) — DHR Health is giving the gift of vaccines to its employees and immediate family members.
On Wednesday, the hospital received more than 3,000 Moderna vaccines, and after a trial run yesterday, began a mass distribution, with some waiting hours for the vaccine.
Hospital officials say they are experiencing a crisis and surge of COVID-19 cases, making this distribution more vital in protecting the community.
DHR is also offering vaccines to some frontline workers in area counties as well as law enforcement agencies, and some area physicians in the community. Following guidance issued by the state earlier this week.
“Making sure that if we don’t have takers relatively quickly that we move on to the next stage and offer it to those folks. So that again the most important thing is we vaccinate. Don’t let the vaccine sit for too long,” says Dr. Robert Martinez, Chief Medical Officer, DHR Health.
Earlier this week, the state issued guidance that said hospitals would continue to receive more doses of vaccines on a weekly basis, but hospital officials don’t expect the vaccine to be available to the general public until at least February.
Dr. Martinez says the timeline depends on the adoption rate, which is the percentage of people who have taken the vaccine, adding he hopes as many people will take the vaccine as possible.
“We still have a lot of work to do at all levels, federal, state and local level. In educating folks on how well it works, how lucky we are to have the vaccine, and how important it is to get the vaccine as soon as possible and follow through with it, that’s a big part of our success,” says Dr. Martinez
Those 65 years and older or those who have certain chronic medical conditions will be next in line for the vaccine, but it’s unclear how the vaccine will be distributed to those individuals.
DHR plans to continue distributing the vaccine over the weekend.