FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) -- Around 7 a.m. Monday, 975 doses of the first stage of the COVID-19 vaccine arrived at the Parkview Mirro Center and just after noon, the first person in Indiana, a Parkview employee, was vaccinated against the virus.
Now that the coronavirus vaccine has arrived in Northeast Indiana and up to 1,000 more doses will be delivered by the end of the week, the effort to eradicate the virus can begin.
— Caleb Saylor FOX 55 (@CSaylorFOX55) December 14, 2020
It’ll all start with healthcare workers. Those from organizations in Allen, Huntington, or Whitley county who were designated as top priority, 1A, by the Indiana Department of Health will be able to get the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine starting Tuesday.
Michelle Charles, Vice President of Nuring Informatics at Parkview Health says it’s taken a month of planning and even computer simulations to make sure the vaccination clinic at the Parkview Mirro Center runs smoothly and quickly.
"We have a goal of being able to give 1,000 shots a day. In order for us to accomplish that, simulation is very important," Charles explained.
Those top priority healthcare workers, not just Parkview employees, but from other organizations as well, and also long term care workers, can sign up via an email link provided to them by professional organizations, licensing agency, or their employers to schedule a time.
Charles says they’ve taken every step to provide a safe environment, including social distancing and barriers. They’re even screening for history of allergic reactions to vaccines beforehand to try and avoid an incident like what happened in the United Kingdom.
Brian Dixon, Ph.D., the Director of Public Health Informations at the Regenstrief Institute says those getting vaccinated shouldn’t expect anything bad to happen.
Dixon explained, "They’re incredibly rare events. Most people, both in the clinical trials and the people receiving the vaccine in the United Kingdom, as well as the United States now, are not showing those same signs of having allergic reactions."
Once people get their first dose, Charles says they’ll be observed for fifteen minutes after to make sure nothing serious happens. During that time the vaccinated can sign up for their second round, expected to arrive in approximately three weeks time.
Charles says after the healthcare system trying for so long to slow the spread of the virus, she’s happy that help is here.
"I think it’s great," Charles said. "Of course when it’s my turn, I will take the shot because I just think it is the right thing to do and it’s the right thing to do for the community!”
For those living outside of Allen, Huntington or Whitley counties who would be eligible to receive the vaccine, FOX 55 was told when you sign up and enter your zip code, it will tell you where you’re supposed to go to get your vaccine.
When you do go to get the shot, you have to bring your ID as well as your employee ID to prove you are who you are and you’re eligible for the vaccine.
To read more about what Dixon had to say about the vaccine, click here