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    Naval Hospital Pensacola Combats COVID-19 with Drive-Thru Vaccination Clinic

    Naval Hospital Pensacola Conducts a Drive-thru COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic

    Photo By Petty Officer 2nd Class Carter Denton | PENSACOLA, Fla. (May 1, 2021) Hospitalman Gabriel Kobylak, a native of Sylvania, Ohio,...... read more read more

    PENSACOLA, FL, UNITED STATES

    05.01.2021

    Story by Petty Officer 1st Class Brannon Deugan 

    Naval Hospital Pensacola

    Naval Hospital Pensacola (NHP) held a COVID-19 vaccination drive-thru clinic for TRICARE beneficiaries on May 1, 2021.

    NHP was prepared to provide more than 600 vaccinations to beneficiaries at least 16 years old during this drive-thru vaccination.

    “We [NHP] have been looking forward to this for a long time,” said Cmdr. Jonathan Elliot, NHP’s public health emergency officer. “We have been looking forward to having enough vaccines and to be at the right stage of the vaccine roll out to offer it to all of our beneficiaries. This is a really exciting time for [NHP], and it could not have come soon enough.

    “We are trying to get the vaccine out to as broad of a population as we can,” said Elliot, from Morehead City, North Carolina. “We are at a position now where all adults are eligible. We want to make sure that all of our beneficiaries know that we are here to support them with the vaccine, and we are trying to make our schedule as adjustable as we can to make sure we are bring the vaccine as close to them as possible.”

    The drive-thru clinic provides vaccination scheduling flexibility for beneficiaries with busy schedules due to work, school, etc. Elliot explained that opening up the drive-thru clinic on a Saturday helps families lift as many barriers as possible to get the vaccine.

    “Navywide, this is the first drive-thru event for COVID vaccine,” said Elliot. “We have done it for other vaccines in the past, so it seemed an easy transition to COVID, but I guess because of some of the logistical challenges, nobody has put that piece together yet. However, this is the first drive-thru event that the Navy has put on, and it looks like it is successful.”

    The logistical challenges of the drive-thru clinic include a detailed plan for traffic flow to ensure safety, tracking of paperwork and the temperature control of the vaccine.

    “We have to keep the vaccine at a certain temperature,” said Elliot. “The fact that we have the hospital right next to us means we can run the vaccine in and out as we need to keep it at that temperature.”

    A second drive-thru event is being planned for three weeks from now for beneficiaries that received their first dose of the vaccine during this drive-thru clinic.

    “It is a two-shot series, so we will do another one in three weeks for the second dose,” said Elliot. “As far as doing another first shot series, we will have to see what the demand is based on our uptake today. If there is a demand to do another… we will do one every Saturday if that is what our population needs.”

    During the 4-hour clinic, 318 TRICARE beneficiaries received their first dose of the COVID vaccination due to the efforts of the NHP staff.

    “It’s an absolute privilege to be out here and help combat this virus that has taken a toll on our country,” said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Sabrina Farrell from Marysville, Washington. “The fact that we can help put an end to this is very heartwarming.”

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 05.01.2021
    Date Posted: 05.01.2021 13:47
    Story ID: 395349
    Location: PENSACOLA, FL, US 
    Hometown: MARYSVILLE, WA, US
    Hometown: MOREHEAD CITY, NC, US

    Web Views: 122
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN