Local healthcare systems expand COVID-19 vaccine availability to community healthcare personnel

Coronavirus in Pennsylvania

Jessica Coyne, who works for Hershey Outpatient Surgery Center, receives a band-aid after she got her COVID-19 vaccination from Jennifer Stokes, a registered nurse from Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021.

On Monday, Penn State Health and Geisinger Health announced their plans to expand their COVID-19 vaccine availability to community healthcare personnel throughout central Pennsylvania.

Individuals who quality include “Tier 1A healthcare personnel,” which include chiropractors, school or university clinical personnel, nurses, physicians, EMS workers, medical students, and non-affiliated healthcare providers–as outlined by the Pa. Department of Health COVID-19 vaccination plan.

In addition to the community healthcare workers, Geisinger employees who have yet to receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine are included in this opportunity.

According to Penn State Health, “the health system is holding vaccination clinics for [phase 1A personnel] at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Holy Spirit Medical Center and St. Joseph Medical Center.” The vaccinations are made by appointment only.

Those interested in taking part in Geisinger’s option must go through the MyGeisinger app and make an appointment, as well.

Penn State Health has been allocating a portion of the COVID vaccine for community healthcare personnel since the healthcare system began receiving doses in December. “We’re happy to be able to offer COVID vaccines to this very important group of community partners,” said Dr. William Bird, a senior vice president of Penn State Health Medical Group. 

To date, Geisinger has provided about 15,000 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Geisinger is administering the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines and urges healthcare workers to plan accordingly for their second dose when making their initial appointment.

For more information about COVID-19 vaccination plans throughout Pennsylvania, or to determine if specific healthcare employees qualify for this opportunity, visit the DOH Phase 1A fact sheet.


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