Cooper University Hospital becomes 1st hospital in South Jersey to issue COVID vaccine
Cooper University Hospital in Camden became the first hospital in South Jersey to vaccinate employees against COVID-19.
Nurse manager Rosetta Oliver became the first health care worker at the hospital to receive the shot. She is one of 30 health care workers receiving the first dose at the hospital on Tuesday.
“Working here in health care at Cooper University Hospital, we saw a lot when we had the first surge of COVID and nobody wants to go through that,” she said.
Cooper officials say that the hospital received 975 doses in the hospital’s first shipment of the vaccine. It will provide the first dose for roughly an eighth of the hospital staff. From there, it will continue down the line.
“We’re excited to get the next shipment next week, to be able to continue to vaccinate our people,” said co-CEO Dr. Anthony Mazzarelli.
Mazzarelli and co-CEO Kevin O’Dowd says that they are hoping that these first health care workers will inspire their co-workers and even those not in the medical field to get vaccinated.
“I believe in leading by example, and if I’m going to advocate this for my staff and patients, I think I should be able to go out there and say I did it,” said Dr. Guy Hewlett.
Doctors say that getting vaccinated against the virus is important.
“You shouldn’t be on the fence on this one. There’s no fence, you have to leap over the fence,” said Dr. Irwin Gratz. “This is the way to go, and you have to take the opportunity to take this vaccine. There’s no other way to go, really.”
Health care workers at University Hospital in Newark, Hackensack Meridian Health and AtlantiCare in Atlantic City also started to receive the vaccine.