The first doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in Wilbarger County. The Vernon campus of North Texas State Hospital received doses of the Moderna version of the vaccine and began vaccinations last Wednesday, according to spokesperson Christine Mann.
Mann said that they received “our first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine today at North Texas State Hospital-Vernon and will be vaccinating staff as soon as possible. The vaccine, manufactured by Moderna, will increase our ability to protect the health and safety of patients in our care while we continue responding to this pandemic.”
Hillcrest Pharmacy received 100 doses and pharmacist Adam Bayer said that 100 different people were earmarked to receive the vaccines, beginning with City of Vernon first responders, then Dr. Travis Lehman, and other healthcare workers that had been prioritized by Wilbarger General Hospital.
Bayer said that the vaccine requires two shots, several weeks apart, but that he was told to give the first doses to 100 different people and wait for follow-up shipments in order to give out the follow-up shot.
The Texas Department of State Health Services reports that Wilbarger General Hospital is slated to receive 200 doses of vaccine this week, and that NTSH-Vernon is slated to receive an additional 1,300 doses this week, enough to ensure all patients and staff receive the vaccine.
The state reported on Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, that there have been 1,238 cases of Covid in Wilbarger County (10 percent of the population), with 30 cases still active, and 31 fatalities — a 2.5 percent death rate.
J.J. Oznick, Chief of the Vernon Fire Department, was reported as the first in Vernon to receive the Moderna Covid-19 vaccination, as administered by Bayer, the pharmacist.
Chief Oznick said the shot felt like any other vaccine he had received, and he felt no side effects. Bayer reported that he had received 100 doses of the vaccine, and that they were all spoken for going to first responders and medical personnel. The vaccine requires two shots, approximately a month apart