Contra Costa County, California – The highly anticipated Moderna vaccine has arrived to the Bay Area, which means two different vaccines are going into the arms of frontline health care workers.
However, despite the availability of the vaccine, Bay Area hospitals are bracing for dark days as the coronavirus continues to spread.
Hospitals like John Muir Medical Center are getting ready to open a portable unit to deal with the overflow.
“We’ve never had to consider moving out of our department walls to care of our patients,” a healthcare worker said.
For the first time, John Muir Medical Center in Concord will be opening a mobile care unit to handle ER patients.
“We’re prepared to deal with the next increase in patient volume,” said Dr. Russell Rodriguez.
As hospitals gear up to accommodate more patients, healthcare workers are getting much needed protection.
Marin Health Medical Center became one of the first to get the Moderna vaccine. and 300 frontline health care workers got vaccinated Tuesday.
“It’s been very scary,” Melissa Finney, a nursing assistant said. “Can you imagine, I’ve had seven to eight COVID patients at one time and giving them the proper care, and in and out of those rooms has been scary. So to receive this vaccine is a sense of relief for me.”
Unlike the Pfizer vaccine, the Moderna vaccine does not have to be kept as cold thus making it easier to handle, but doctors say both are equally effective.
Although vaccination is underway, the fight is far from over.
“We may have some protection as we fight this battle,” a healthcare worker said. “We need the public to join us and please wear a mask, wash your hands and follow the guidelines.”