Awaiting supplies from the state causes local delay in vaccine distribution

Coronavirus

The wait is on across the country for COVID-19 vaccines.

Residents at one local assisted living facility are finally receiving the first dose of the vaccine this week.

Though there has been a delay in vaccine roll out in Erie County, residents at West Lake Woods Assisted Living received their first dose after a month long wait period.

Residents and staff at West Lake Woods Assisted Living , a facility part of the federal pharmacy partnership program, received their first doses of the Pfizer vaccine earlier this week.

“We’re just delighted to have everything booked because our residents have been COVID-free since last March,” said Tim Coughlin, Co-Owner of West Lake Woods.

Coughlin added that the West Lake community can rest a little easier knowing there is little chance of an outbreak as 100% of residents received the first dose.

Coughlin said that it was unsettling not knowing when they would have access.

“It’s been frustrating for all of us particularly those of us in care of older people,” Coughlin said.

Coughlin added that he hopes locally those who are 65 and older will soon have access to the vaccine.

At UPMC Hamot, medical professionals are working on vaccinating employees as well as other health care workers in the area.

One doctor says that despite President Biden’s vaccination plan, UPMC Hamot is currently relying on the state.

“We know on a weekly basis how much we’re going to get and that kind of helps us plan. I don’t think that we’ve really seen a huge amount of increase in vaccines being allocated to us,” said Dr. Jason Chenault, Senior Director of Emergency Services at UPMC Hamot.

They say with a potential increase in vaccine production, vaccine state distribution, UPMC and other local hospitals are ready to protect more of the community.

“We’re ready to go if we get that vaccine. I think that obviously we can expand out efforts and get people vaccinated fairly quickly,” Dr. Chenault said.

AHN Saint Vincent hospital will soon receive more vaccines, however, they are already spoken for, going to high risk individuals including those 75 years or older.

AHN Saint Vincent does anticipate receiving additional quantities of the vaccine in the near future, and are offering a new website portal on AHN.org for scheduling when those doses become available. Go to ahn.org and click on Coronavirus Resources – “Learn More” for more information.

AHN recommends that those who are interested in a vaccine when it becomes available at AHN sign up for a MyChart account or app – which is available to all –to receive scheduling updates. You can click on “Connect with MyChart” on AHN.org for this and for more COVID-19 and vaccine information.

LECOM will be also announcing an updated vaccination plan on Friday, looking to better protect the community.

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