On Monday, December 21, 2020, the Mohawk Valley Health System (MVHS) became one of the first in the state to begin vaccinating residents and staff in its long-term care facility – MVHS Rehabilitation and Nursing Center (RNC). The vaccines and vaccinators were provided as part of the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-term Care (LTC) Program and are separate from the vaccines received by MVHS last week. Walgreens is MVHS’s partner in this program and will administer the vaccines to more than 100 residents and 100 staff members today.
“The importance of the COVID vaccine to our vulnerable population cannot be overstated,” said Brandon Johnson, Executive Director of MVHS RNC. “This disease is especially risky to residents living in long-term care facilities, so having this vaccine provides hope that we are moving in the right direction to get past this pandemic.”
The Pharmacy Partnership for LTC Program facilitates the safe vaccination of the critical patient population residing in LTC facilities (LTCF), while reducing the burden on LTCF and local health departments. At no cost to facilities, the program provides end-to-end management of the COVID-19 vaccination process, including cold chain management, on-site vaccinations and fulfillment of reporting requirements. LTCF staff who have not received COVID-19 vaccine can also be vaccinated as part of the program (https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/long-term-care/pharmacy-partnerships.html).
“In order to provide as much protection as possible to our residents, contact with friends and family members has been extremely limited or non-existent,” said Johnson. “We do our best to provide opportunities for families to communicate via the phone, video conference or even through windows, but the ability of our residents to hug or hold the hand of those who are closest to them has been lost in this pandemic. All of us at RNC are looking forward to the time when friends and families can visit and hold their loved ones again.”
Walgreens will return in approximately 21 days to administer the second dose of the vaccine to those receiving it today, and will administer vaccines to the remaining residents and staff who elected to receive the vaccine, but didn’t receive it today.
For updates related to COVID-19, visit mvhealthsystem.org/coronavirus.