OROVILLE, Calif. - On Monday, Oroville Hospital said they have administered more than 24,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Susie Schmidt, Director of the Pharmacy, said the hospital administered about 14,000 first doses and about 10,000 second doses.
Oroville Hospital began vaccinating patients on Dec. 21, 2020, when they vaccinated 200 people in five hours.
In December, people were getting vaccinated at the hospital but staff determined they had too many people and not enough space, so they upgraded to the Oroville Sports Club where they have several big rooms to accommodate people.
“We are doing probably on average 150 an hour now, we have a lot bigger place and a lot more experience doing it, a lot more people helping,” said Dr. Roy Shannon, Head of Infection Control. Dr. Shannon also oversees the COVID-19 response.
Oroville Hospital said besides 2,500 doses of Moderna it's only administering the Pfizer vaccine now.
“The hospital has financed the whole thing,” Dr. Shannon said. “It takes at least 30 people to run the vaccine clinic and we don’t have 30 people that are available every time we do it. So we supplement that with student nurses volunteering, we have some retired nurse volunteering, we’ve had a couple high school kids volunteering to do certain jobs.”
Jaxon Elmore, a Chico State nursing student who volunteered at the Oroville Sports Club, said he was able to get five clinical hours while administering 100 vaccines.
“I was in charge of checking the recipient’s paperwork as well as ask them some standard screening questions,” Elmore said. “I also educated them on the potential side effects of the vaccine.”
As of Tuesday, March 30, Enloe Medical Center said its hospital-based clinic administered 23,310 doses and its Community Clinic administered 28,011 doses, for a total of 51,321 doses administered.
Enloe's two clinics have combined to administer 32,315 first doses, 18,966 second doses and 40 single doses.
“At our hospital-based clinic, we are on target for March to be the second-highest month of vaccination, since the inception of the clinic,” Julie Martin, Sr. Director for Enloe, Ambulatory Operations, said in a statement.
Enloe began administering vaccines on Dec. 17, 2020, at the hospital-based clinic and administered the first dose at the community clinic, currently at the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico, on Jan. 20, 2021.
"The hospital-based clinic is setup to allow us to schedule nine appointments every 10 minutes,” Martin said. “We are now in process of transitioning to the state system, MyTurn and scheduling will go to an online, self-scheduling system.”
Both Enloe Medical Center and Oroville Hospital said they have received a lot of help from Butte County Public Health.
Oroville Hospital said Butte County Public Health helped them fill vaccination appointments.
“One of our biggest strengths has been the collaboration between Enloe and Butte County Public Health,” Martin said. “In addition to collaboration with BCPH and support by all levels of our medical center leadership from our Board to our Frontline staff, it has been the ongoing efforts of so many of our departments that have made us successful.”
Jennifer Meyers, Administrative Director of Clinic Services, said the hospital has about 12 appointments every five minutes. Oroville Hospital administers vaccinations on Wednesdays and Thursdays and are free of charge.
Edie Fischer, Director of Peri-Operative Services at Oroville Hospital, said people are happy to be coming in to get the vaccine as they are looking for a sense of normalcy. She said people want to know as much about the vaccine as possible and, as a nurse, she is able to provide the patient with the necessary education.
“I think overwhelmingly hearing the teachers be so happy to be able to get their vaccines because the teachers really want to get back in school, they want to be able to have the children come back to school because that is so important to the development of that generation,” Fischer said.
Dr. Shannon is encouraging people to get the vaccine because as more people get the vaccine, it will be safer for everyone.
With a lot of publicity about different variants going around, Dr. Shannon said that's what happens when viruses spread.
“The virus can only develop variants when it’s replicating and if it’s not infecting people then it’s not replicating, so it can't produce a variant,” Dr. Shannon said. “So fewer variants if fewer people get infected.”
Fischer said the human body is designed to have a reaction because the vaccine is trying to make the body stronger to fight against the coronavirus.
Oroville Hospital staff is encouraging people to continue to educate themselves about the vaccine by visiting Butte County Public Health’s COVID-19 information website, as well as the CDC's COVID-19 vaccine information website. They also recommended watching the Journal of American Medical Association on YouTube.
The last two photos are courtesy of Joe Page, Marketing Manager at Enloe Medical Clinic.