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Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Vaccine delayed in reaching BCMH

Update from Bates County Memorial Hospital: We have just learned that our hospital will not receive our first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine, intended for patient-facing healthcare workers, as early as expected.

Dr. Benjamin Crary, a hospitalist for Bates County Memorial Hospital, received his first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine on December 18 at St. Luke's South. When asked why he felt it was important to receive the vaccination at his earliest opportunity, Dr. Crary said, "It was important to me because this might be our best tool to get out of this pandemic. The science is sound. It's safe and effective. I want this pandemic to be over - the devastation and death it has caused has been horrible. And, it would be nice to live our lives."

As a hospitalist for both BCMH and St. Luke's Health System, Dr. Crary had the opportunity to receive the Pfizer vaccine at St. Luke's, and was the first BCMH doctor to be vaccinated. (Physicians at BCMH will receive the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it becomes available.) Both the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines require two doses administered several weeks apart. Dr. Crary said he experienced no significant side effects after his first dose except for some tenderness at the site of the shot. 

Dr. Crary also stressed the importance of continuing to use all of the tools available to us now to prevent the spread of infection: washing hands frequently, social distancing and wearing a mask whenever you are with others who do not live in your household, and staying home when you have symptoms of illness except to seek medical care.