The World Health Organization declared the novel coronavirus a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. Vaccines have been a huge goal to help fight the spread of the virus, and now multiple types of COVID 19 vaccines are being administered.
The Native American Community Clinic, or NACC, is one place where the Moderna COVID 19 vaccine is available for staff and patients. The vaccine kickoff at NACC was held before the New Year, starting with a short ceremony and initial vaccines.
A lot of thought and planning has been put into what the rollout will look like at NACC. Dr Antony Stately is NACC’s CEO.
“We’ll start with 65 and older. We’ll look at folks 55 to 65, also many of those fixed folks within our community are considered to be elders.
We’ll be vaccinating those individuals who have some chronic conditions that place the medics at a heightened risk for contracting COVID-19 and getting sick and possibly ending up in the ICU,” said Stately.
They’re not wasting any time getting the vaccines out to the Native community.
“The native population is so much more disparately impacted by COVID-19 in the state. We’ve been given the ability to justify and sort of create our own methodology for who we want to vaccinate in our communities based on the risk that we see happening in our communities,” said Stately.
Those working in highly impacted communities are trying to make the vaccine available as soon as possible.
“There are folks like me and other folks in health leadership in the native community who have advocated and really strongly lobbied for our prioritization of native communities and black communities to get the vaccine and to get it before other communities that have historically had more privileged because we are seeing much more significantly impacted than the rest of the population,” said Stately.
Those under 18 can’t get the Moderna vaccine at this point. Also, those who’ve had COVID need to be cleared from the illness for 90 days.
Leah Lemm reporting for MN Native News