Baptist Health to receive COVID-19 vaccines

Coronavirus Watch Kentucky

HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (WEHT)– Madisonville will be one of the first cities to receive the Pfizer vaccine. Governor Andy Beshear announces Baptist Health Hospital in Madisonville will be one of the first places in Kentucky to receive COVID-19 vaccines.

Hospital leaders sent Eyewitness News a statement saying they are working through logistics and an operations plan for their next steps. Hopkins County Judge Executive Jack Whitfield says this is great news.

“We are tickled to find out that we are going to get 975 doses at Baptist Health,” said Whitfield. He had already spoken to Baptist Health, making sure they are able to store both types of COVID-19 vaccines, which they confirmed. “So we are lucky to have a regional healthcare facility like that. Who can actually take care of those vaccines and given them to people who need them the most.”

Nursing home patients and health workers taking care of coronavirus patients will be the first two groups to get the vaccine.

The Chief Medical Officer of Hillside Center Nursing Home in Madisonville sent Eyewitness News a statement saying, “Now comes the time to focus on the operational challenges of getting the vaccine to nursing homes.” Dr. Feifer went on to explain how limited the supply is. “It is likely that doses in the initial batches of vaccine will not be enough to vaccinate everyone in tier 1a.”

Judge Executive Whitfield says hopefully companies will ramp up production, but even with the vaccines coming to the Tri-State this month, he hopes no one lets their guard down.

“There’s a long way to go before we will have that vaccine and the numbers that will really allow everything to get back to anything resembling normal.”

Governor Beshear says he expects the first doses to go out on December 15th.

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(This story was originally published on December 2, 2020)

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