Munson Regional Update; Traveling Vaccine Clinics
The hospital system says numbers are trending in the right direction. Case counts and hospitalizations are down again this week. Dr. Christine Nefcy is the Munson Healthcare Chief Medical Officer. She says, “We are doing much better than we had been the last few weeks… we’re happy to be heading in that right direction.”
Meanwhile local health departments say they’re taking vaccine clinics on the road – spreading out to more satellite locations, like township halls, businesses, even local festivals. District Health Department #10 Medical Director Dr. Jennifer Morse says, “We’re happy to partner with any area festivals, or area events, or after church. Anything really where people might want to have vaccinations offered.” She adds, “We are ready to travel to wherever people are ready to get vaccinated.”
And last week the Benzie-Leelanau Health Department held vaccine clinics in Suttons Bay at a grocery store and a brewing company.
Grand Traverse Co. Health Dept. Health Officer Wendy Hirschenberger says they’re ready to work with local businesses interested in hosting clinics. “Partnering with several businesses, larger industry, places like that where we can bring the vaccine to them, maybe during their work hours and that makes it more convenient for right after they get off their shift.”
Grand Traverse County is also launching a “Homebound Hotline”. For those who aren’t able to leave their home to get to a clinic, healthcare workers can bring the vaccine to you. That number is (231) 995-6084.
Dr. Nefcy says the vaccination rate for Munson Healthcare staff is “still hovering at about 67.8%.” While that falls short of the overall goal of 70% to reach herd immunity, Dr. Nefcy says they’re planning Johnson & Johnson clinics, because some employees have expressed interest in the one-shot alternative. “Our healthcare workers are an absolute reflection of the community around us. Our rates are at 67.8%. There’s a wide variability though in who’s getting vaccinated. Our frontline employees that have been taking care of these COVID patients have a much higher vaccine rate than some of our other employees that may have been protected from seeing what’s going on from a COVID-19 perspective. Our physicians, our rate is in the high 80’s. We have some hospitals that 100% of their physicians are immunized.”