Christy Stevens (pictured above), a nurse at St. Joseph Mercy Livingston, was first to receive a vaccination from the FDA-approved Moderna COVID-19 vaccine today, Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020, at the hospital. St. Joseph Mercy Livingston received 800 doses, joining six other Trinity Health Michigan hospitals that have begun administering COVID-19 vaccines to front line workers.
The vaccines are being administered on a voluntary basis to health care personnel who meet the CDC-defined criteria of direct patient care to COVID-19 patients, including those working on the COVID units, Intensive Care Unit, and Emergency Department. Employees who work in those departments are being given the opportunity to self-register and make an appointment to obtain the vaccine.
“The arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine is a historic moment for our community and sends a signal of hope and optimism to our health care colleagues working the front lines of this pandemic,” said Dr. Varsha Moudgal, associate chief medical officer at St. Joseph Mercy Livingston. “Help is here. Though alone it is not the solution, when combined with masking, social distancing and regular hand washing, we can begin to flatten the curve and hopefully put an end to this pandemic.”
Trinity Health Michigan hospitals throughout the state expect to continue to receive weekly shipments of both the Pfizer and the Moderna mRNA-1273 vaccine. Across Trinity Health Michigan, Mercy Health Grand Rapids, Mercy Health Muskegon, St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor, St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea, St. Joseph Mercy Oakland and St. Mary Mercy Livonia have all received their first vaccine shipments. All the hospitals have ultra-cold freezers and are prepared to receive, store and distribute vaccines over the coming months.
People who are vaccinated must stay committed to the recommended safety guidelines. It is crucial to remain vigilant – avoid crowds, continue physical distancing, wear masks and continue excellent hand hygiene.
St. Joe’s Livingston looks forward to offering vaccinations to community members, which it hopes to do in the coming weeks as it works through the CDC and state directed priority list. Information regarding the ability to schedule community members for the COVID-19 vaccination will be provided as soon as it becomes available. For more information about the COVID-19 vaccine, please visit Saint Joseph Mercy Health System at https://www.stjoeshealth.org/vaccine.