Four hospital CEOs give an update on Covid booster shots.
PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - Once approval is received, Covid 19 vaccine booster shots will be available to people who received their first doses more than 8 months ago. As we continue our series with the four local hospital CEOs, I asked them if they are prepared to administer booster shots and if they have a distribution plan in place.
Peter Sirois the CEO of Northern Maine Medical Center says, “We’re ready to go and the problem we’re having right now is the CDC is not giving us the permission. Pfizer has the okay to start boosters after eight months and we’re ready to go. We were actually going to plan a couple of events to, get it done, but we got notification today, the CDC is make sure you hold back and not do any boosters until you hear back from us. So we kind of rolled everything back. We had people calling in, we advertised for people to come, our healthcare workers and also those over 65 and we had to put that all on hold. So, we’re ready to go. It’s just a matter of getting the permission to do it.”
Kris Doody, the CEO of Cary Medical Center says, “We’ve mentioned, the guidance changes, there’s new information and we’re prepared. It just a matter of, as Pete described, getting the, okay, that we have the permission to move forward.”
We then asked, once the hospitals do get that permission, are they looking at distribution through primary care thing clinics?
Kris Doody says, “Like we’ve described for our healthcare providers, which are going to be prioritized, we are hearing that. I mean, that was announced fairly early on when they talked about boosters. We’ll do a clinic like we did before. It will be available though in the primary care practices, because obviously people see their primary care providers. Cause one of the other things that we’ve discovered, especially with this vaccination mandate is some people want the privacy of being in their physician practice and they’re in the office and having it done in that privacy. And that’s fine. We’ll have different options available, but to get a large volume, especially with healthcare workers, once it’s announced we’ll be doing a clinic.”
Shawn Anderson, Houlton Regional Hospital’s CEO says, “I think in Houlton our effort will be multifaceted. It’ll certainly be in our physician practices, but we’ll also be holding some mass clinics like we did very early on, which were very successful in getting shots in arms. There’s a great appetite for it. We just can’t wait to have the go ahead to be able to.”
Copyright 2021 WAGM. All rights reserved.