Hospitals, medical facilities putting plans in motion once COVID-19 vaccine gets approved
Plans continue for hospitals and medical facilities to get people vaccinated across the state, and the country, and even though the vaccines have not yet been approved for use in the U.S. -- it's coming.
Many hospitals and medical facilities are putting plans in motion once the vaccine gets approved. According to leaders in Essex County, the old Sears store in the Livingston Mall could soon be home to a mega-vaccination center.
It's one of a variety of locations Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo has in mind for a possible mega-vaccination location, and it looks promising. It's unclear when the vaccination process would start, or how many vaccinations will be available.
Hospitals are also figuring out logistics for taking on the Pfizer vaccine. At CentraState Medical Center in Freehold, administrators say they're working out how best to inoculate 2,000 nurses and doctors on staff. CentraState expects to have the vaccine between Dec. 11 and 15, and they're just waiting on FDA approval.
CentraState has also purchased special refrigeration for the doses, since the vaccine has to be kept at negative 94 degrees Fahrenheit. Chief Medical Officer Dr. James Matera says they'll receive trays holding 975 doses of the vaccine, which will be arriving in coolers.
“In a cooler they'll be sending, you can stack five trays to bring you to about 4,800 doses,” says Dr. Matera. “So, imagine a cooler with 4,800 doses and then there's dry ice on top of that for shipping. Our freezer has the capability of holding five trays or one of those coolers. Roughly 4,800 vaccines."
The doctor says if you receive a Pfizer vaccine for your first shot, then patients will also need to get the Pfizer vaccine one month later when getting your second injection.
Gov. Phil Murphy said this week the state is ready for the vaccine, and is also going through an extensive planning process. The governor says even with the vaccine on the horizon, it's important people still limit travel, especially during the holiday season.