Baptist Health Madisonville set to receive first batch of COVID-19 vaccines

Baptist Health Madisonville set to receive first batch of COVID-19 vaccines

MADISONVILLE, Ky. (WFIE) - Baptist Health Madisonville is one of 11 hospitals in Kentucky that will be receiving the first shipment of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

“We’re putting plans in place to vaccinate as we speak,” Dr. Wayne Lipson, the chief medical officer at Baptist Health in Madisonville said.

Baptist Health is set to acquire 975 initial doses of the coronavirus vaccination.

“Well, we’re glad to hear we’re getting the 975 doses to our local hospital,” Hopkins County Judge-Executive Jack Whitfield Jr. said.

Baptist Health officials say their hospital workers will be the first to receive the vaccine. However, officials say they are waiting for direction from the state to see if they can work with other facilities to administer their shipment of vaccines to others.

Hospital administrators say they are prepared to handle the vaccine administering process and will not have to hire anyone.

“It’s a regional medical facility, so it’s not surprising they’re going to send it there,” Whitfield Jr. said.

Baptist Health officials believes their hospital was picked as an initial vaccine location because their healthcare workers have a high risk of contracting the virus, as well as the community’s high COVID-19 rates since the beginning of the pandemic.

“The magic number is 975 doses,” Dr. Lipson said. “The reason that is the magic number is because that’s how Pfizer ships a box.”

Concord Health Systems runs multiple long-term care facilities in the area, including three in Hopkins County.

Within the next few weeks, company officials say their residents will be receiving the date they will get their COVID-19 vaccination.

Concord Health Systems recently signed a contract with Walgreens, which will administer the vaccine to their residents and staff.

“Just glad that we’re finally seeing some movement, and hopefully that will begin to allow us to reopen and get back to somewhat normal,” Whitfield Jr. said.

According to Governor Andy Beshear’s plan, all long-term care facilities in Kentucky are expected to be vaccinated by the end of February 2021.

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