Phoebe forced to block residents from getting COVID-19 vaccine

ALBANY, Ga. – Phoebe Health System blocking several dozen residents from getting vaccinated from COVID-19 due to ineligibility.

Dr. James Black On Vaccines

Dr. James Black

“The CDC has sent out guidelines and distributed them everywhere throughout the country about the process of getting people vaccinated and health care workers are apart of the first tier of people,” says Dr. James Black, medical director for emergency medicine at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital.

In accordance with CDC guidelines on distributing the COVID-19 vaccine, the first tier of people are limited to health care personnel and long-term health care facility residents. But that hasn’t stopped people from trying to get the shot.

“We’ve had some people, and understandable so, wanting to get access to the vaccine but right now it’s not available to the general public.”

Dr. Black says he understands why people are seeking the vaccine as cases are rising in the area and the hospital is getting hit with COVID-19 patients daily.

“We’re very apprehensive with the number of cases that are going up, the amount of deaths that are occurring on a daily basis and the lack of hospital beds across the nation.”

Phoebe Frontline Health Care Workers Encourage Black Residents To Vaccinate

Which is why healthcare workers are first in line.

“I think it’s important that we take care of the people that are trying to take care of the population.”

But Phoebe reps say they’re eager to supply the vaccine demand.

Scott Steiner On Vaccines

Scott Steiner

“It’s all dependent of the number of vaccines that we get in,” says Phoebe President and CEO Scott Steiner, “I would anticipate by mid-January we’ll have hopefully gotten through most of that second tier and by the first quarter hopefully everyone in the community.”

So far Phoebe has vaccinated over 1600 tier one people in the community. The full press release from Phoebe is below:

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Phoebe statement