Children’s Mercy employees receive first doses of COVID-19 vaccine
This afternoon, the first Children’s Mercy employees received the COVID-19 vaccine at Children’s Mercy Hospital Kansas in Overland Park.
April McNeill-Johnson, MD, said, “I feel empowered to continue my job as a pediatric emergency physician. I feel like I’m taking a stance for health in our community by being able to get the vaccine.
“I’m excited for today. It means a lot to me professionally and personally. Professionally, it makes me comfortable coming to work knowing I’m at a lower risk of getting COVID-19 and be able to pass that along to my family members. Personally, it means a lot because the African American community and other marginalized populations have been adversely affected by COVID-19. It’s very helpful to know that we can have less adverse outcomes by being vaccinated.”
Critical Care Emergency Department Nurse Mary Brooker added, “This is an exciting day because it feels like we are turning a corner. We are experiencing fatigue among our staff, among our community, with our patients. This feels like a light in the distance that we may someday turn the corner and come back to some resemblance of what we used to be as normal. Certainly, introducing the vaccine to the community is an amazing move forward and I’m really excited.”
Children’s Mercy received 175 doses from the state of Kansas. According to the hospital’s employee vaccine distribution plan, the first employees to receive the vaccine will be those who have initial contact with patients whose COVID-19 status is positive or unknown. To receive the vaccine from the state of Kansas, Children's Mercy employees must work either full or part-time in Kansas.
Vaccine from Missouri is expected to arrive next week. “We hope to have all patient-facing staff vaccinated within the next three to four weeks,” said Jennifer Watts, MD, Medical Director for Emergency Preparedness.
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