By Louie Graves
Frontline medical workers at Howard Memorial Hospital began getting their Covid-19 vaccination shots last Thursday afternoon.
About 30 persons gathered in the hospital cafeteria. In a small room across the hall, a pharmacist from Hot Springs Village administered the shots. A hospital spokesperson explained that the outside agency administered the shots in order for the hospital to avoid the copious record-keeping that goes with whoever administers the vaccinations.
HMH personnel, most in their multi-color scrubs, were there to get the shots Thursday, and the remaining 15 were to get theirs Saturday. Each group will return in 21 days to get the required second shot.
The hospital received tightly limited doses of vaccine. The medicine is kept frozen, and must be used within 120 hours after it is thawed. The hospital got the approved vaccine developed by Pfizer.
The hospital will not give shots to the public. In Howard County, the public may be vaccinated at Power Pharmacy in Nashville and at Dierks Pharmacy in Dierks when the vaccine becomes available.
First to get the vaccine here was Dr. Sam Peebles, an emergency room physician at the hospital. Giving the shots was Cody Turner, a pharmacist from Hot Springs Village.
Organizers for the vaccinations were Alicia Collins, HMH Director of Nursing, and Gayla Hooker, RN, Infection Control Nurse.