“We need as many vaccinators as possible early on,” Dr. Reginald Eadie, co-chair of the governor’s COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Group and President and CEO of Trinity Health of New England said.
As Connecticut counts down the days until a COVID-19 vaccine is available, members of the governor’s COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Group are counting out how many places in the state can both store and administer it. Earlier this week Pfizer announced its vaccine will require subzero temperatures for cold-storage supply chain.
“Most of the hospitals in the state of Connecticut will be having to store the vaccine,” Eadie said.
Eadie said vaccinators will have to be able to keep the vaccine in low-temperature freezing storage ranging from -70 to -80 degrees Celsius.
“We had to go out and quickly purchase the ability to ensure that we do our part as a major provider in the state,” Eadie said.
He said Trinity Health of New England alone now has the ability to store thousands of vials of the vaccine.
Earlier this week Governor Ned Lamont said he expects about one percent of the vaccine allocation will come to Connecticut, enough for three to four million citizens.
“Eventually we will expand that to doctors’ offices both internists as well as specialists. I can imagine that some of the local drug stores will be administering as well,” Eadie said.
The first of the three vaccine administration phases would be limited to critical populations, those at an increased risk for severe illness, congregate settings, essential workers and people with limited access to the vaccine.
Connecticut is already preparing for the arrival of a coronavirus vaccine, but there is still much to be done before it will be available.
The second phase, when a large number of the vaccines will be available, could also be administered at mobile and public health clinics with setups similar to what we saw with mass testing sites.
“As the supply grows we will expand the number of vaccinators,” Eadie said.