MANAHAWKIN – Southern Ocean Medical Center is among the many hospitals that have begun giving some of their staff the COVID-19 vaccine.
On December 17, Southern Ocean Medical Center received its first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine. The Chief Hospital Executive, Michele Morrison, expressed how excited she was for the hospital to acquire the vaccine for its employees.
“I’m very excited about the opportunity for our staff to start receiving the vaccine. It’s really a momentous occasion in our war against COVID-19,” Morrison told TapInto’s Kaitlyn DeBarth. “I’m thrilled that Hackensack Meridian Health is really in the forefront of vaccinations for our team members as they continue to care for all of our patients, whether they are COVID or non-COVID.”
First responders have been at the forefront of the pandemic for months, and many are taking the vaccine so that they don’t get the virus – and so that they don’t spread it to other patients.
“I truly feel it means that it’s the beginning of the end of this disaster and crisis to humanity,” said Dr. Erwin Moy. He was one of the medical staff receiving the vaccine.
“It means that I can soon take care of my patients without worrying about my health, but also not potentially spreading the disease in the Emergency Room Department,” said Dr. Paul Mastrokyriakos, who also received it.
Dr. Mastrokyriakos and Dr. Moy discussed how the elderly and first responders should vaccinate as soon as possible. They also stated that anyone with any comorbidities should all get the vaccine.
“Everyone able to take this vaccine should get the vaccine to help mitigate this terrible disease. Without the vaccine and with a 1.7-2% mortality rate for COVID-19, many more would have to die to achieve herd immunity,” Dr. Mastrokyriakos told TapInto.
Approximately 70 to 80 percent of the population would need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity, according to doctors and scientists.
“We must not be biased in our decision-making or scared to prioritize our patients by getting this vaccine,” Dr. Moy said.
“Getting the vaccine was great,” said Jenna Schaal, RN Emergency Department Manager. “It was easy and it did not hurt. I am feeling good and everyone is excited. I look forward to people developing the antibodies, so we can take our masks off and go back to taking care of our patients normally.”
All recipients were observed for 15 minutes after being vaccinated.