SIDNEY — Officials at Wilson Health are preparing for distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“The Centers for Disease Control CDC is making coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination recommendations for the United States based on input from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP),” said Dr. Robert McDevitt, Wilson Heath’s chief medical officer. “ACIP is a federal advisory committee made up of medical and public health experts who develop recommendations on the use of vaccines in the U.S. public and have been years. Wilson Health will follow the recommendations put forth by this expert group and is prepared to administer the COVID-19 Vaccine when it becomes available.
McDevitt said the hospital is ready to accept the vaccines to be administered to local residents.
“We have proper measures in place to ensure the vaccines are stored properly at the recommended temperature,” he said.
The vaccine will be administered in two doses.
“People need to be educated about the two-dose COVID-19 vaccine,” he said. “The simplest way to explain the two doses is this. If you are a parent and have a teenager, or a kid, and you want them to take out the garbage, or you want them to wash their hands — more than likely you have to tell them more than once. Your immune system works the same way. Dosing twice — at least 21 days for Pfizer’s vaccine, and 28 days for Moderna — comes as a result of testing during vaccine trials.
“They tested to see when was the peak time of the amount of antibody that came up in the serum inside your blood. And they found out it was peaking at about 21 days, so they realized — we can go ahead and give that second dose at 21 days. The reason why we need to make sure we have a sufficient number of doses is to make sure our immune system recognizes the protein or antigen that would cause a disease, and make the antibody to protect you against them. And it takes two doses to get the prime, maximum amount of protection that you need,” he said.
“The vaccine will require two doses in order to be completely effective,” he continued. “As with any vaccine, there is always a chance of contracting a virus even when a person is vaccinated. That is why it is very important to follow the proper health and safety guidelines – wear a mask, wash your hands and properly social distance from others. “
McDevitt said Wilson Health must follow the tiered priority groups for vaccine administration set forth by ACIP and CDC.
“While we understand members of our community are anxious and excited about the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccination, we will not know the timeline until it is announced by the CDC and FDA,” he said.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4822.