From left: Christina Jacobs, Glenda Severin, Dr. Jane Niamut, Dr. Yelena George, Bert Weewee, Dr. Felix Holiday and Nurse Candida Williams before the administration of the first vaccine at SMMC.
CAY HILL–St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) staff were among the first recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Auxiliary Care Facility (ACF) located across from SMMC on Monday, February 22.
“SMMC’s vaccination administration plan, created and managed by the Hygiene and Infection Control Department, sees six staff members being vaccinated in intervals of 30 minutes,” stated SMMC in a press release on Monday.
The first group vaccinated consisted of SMMC’s Medical Director and Outbreak Management Team Chairman Dr. Felix Holiday, anaesthesiologist Dr. Yelena George, emergency room physician Dr. Jane Niamut, Jr. Manager Patient Care Nurse Christina Jacobs, ER Supervisor Nurse Bert Weewee and Infection Control Supervisor Nurse Glenda Severin.
In addition to vaccinating its staff, SMMC has also agreed to vaccinate staff of the Ambulance Department and St. Maarten Laboratory Services (SLS), and is assisted by Aspen Medical International (AMI) Expeditionary Healthcare.
According to the release, the process of staff being vaccinated sees staff pre-register by filling out the mandatory Collective Prevention Services (CPS) consent form and a medical history form before their appointment.
On the day of their appointment, staff go to the ACF 15 minutes before their scheduled appointment time to have their temperature taken and have the information on both forms verified. Once this is completed, the staff members go to the waiting room where the process is explained to them once more.
When all six of the group have arrived and the process has been explained, the first in line goes into the inoculation room where the vaccine is administered by a nurse.
After the vaccine has been administered, the staff member is then monitored for 15 minutes by another nurse. If the staff member has a history of anaphylaxis or fainting after vaccinations, they are monitored for a longer period. A physician is also present during monitoring in case of any adverse reactions. After fifteen minutes have passed with no reaction, the staff member is then discharged by the physician.
The staff member is also given a date when they must return for their second dose to render the vaccine 95 per cent effective, which means the risk of getting severely ill after contracting COVID-19 is reduced to 5 per cent.
“The process of getting vaccinated is one that requires logistics and precision and I applaud our team for the incredible job they did and the smooth operation that they put together in two weeks,” said Dr. Holiday. “I received my first vaccination today and everything went smoothly and I feel great. I am once again encouraging everyone to get vaccinated. … Vaccinations save lives and it could save yours.”
SMMC thanked its staff, AMI Expeditionary Healthcare, Cay Hill Pharmacy, the Vaccination Management Team, CPS, the Government of St. Maarten, the Government of the Netherlands and the Police Force of St. Maarten for their contributions in making the vaccination administration a success.
SMMC also encourages the public to sign up to receive the vaccine via
https://bit.ly/3tOsJLa or using a form that can be collected at CPS at the Vineyard Building, the Division of Labor Affairs public service centre in Simpson Bay, or the Government Administration Building.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/smmc-staff-receive-covid-19-vaccine