For the last month, the Three Rivers Public Health Department and Memorial Community Hospital and Health System (MCH) have been diligently working to get Washington County residents vaccinated against COVID-19.
MCH has hosted weekly vaccination clinics in the Gardner-Hawks Center on the former Dana College campus and at the hospital, while the health department has used First Lutheran Church.
This week, the health department received an additional 300 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for a total of 1,800 doses, which were divided among the health department and its healthcare partners in Dodge, Saunders and Washington counties.
MCH received 400 doses.
Last week, the Enterprise observed as individuals moved through the vaccination process in which MCH vaccinated 665 people. The clinic operated smoothly and the staff and volunteers should be commended for their efforts.
The hospital receives a list from the health department to schedule appointments. The list is based on the stage the health department is in, which is currently people 65 and older.
Hospital staff call those on the list to notify them of their appointment, ask screening questions and fill out paperwork prior to their arrival at the clinic.
As people arrive, they are directed to the appropriate line based on their last name and given a clipboard of information. After answering a few more questions, they are brought into the gym and receive their shot. Fifteen minutes later, they were on their way.
Those receiving their shots were courteous and appreciative of MCH staff.
While the process to get everyone vaccinated, it's important to remember to be patient. Both entities are working through the list of those who registered. And there's hope it will continue to move right along as the health department expects to have all those 65 and older who want a vaccine to be completed in three weeks.