MCHC to Call Patients to Schedule COVID-19 Vaccinations
Published On: February 5th, 2021|Categories: News|
– “Community members have been anxiously awaiting the COVID-19 vaccine for months, and we are happy to announce that we can now start vaccinating our older patients,” said Madelia Community Hospital & Clinic (MCHC) CEO Jeff Mengenhausen.
We are supposed to be allocated limited quantities of the vaccine each week from the State of Minnesota, and do not know how much vaccine will be supplied until three to four days before it arrives. This makes it difficult to schedule vaccination clinics. So rather than doing a lottery system, we have made the decision to start vaccinating patients based on age. Our oldest patients will be contacted first via phone. If they choose to be vaccinated, an appointment time will be scheduled for them at MCHC. We will continue down our patient list until we get to those that have just turned 65.
“Our oldest patients are the most at risk of getting a severe case of COVID-19, so they seemed like the best population to start with,” said Mengenhausen. “The vaccine coming in each week is far less than the demand. With this limited quantity, we could not take vaccine appointments effectively or efficiently, and many of our older patients can not be contacted via our patient portal or by social media. So we made the decision to dedicate some of our staff time to calling our patients and speaking to each one directly.”
If the clinic times do not work for a patient’s schedule, we may be able to schedule him or her for the next available clinic. The Pfizer vaccine requires two doses, 21 days apart; the Moderna vaccine requires two doses, 28 days apart. The patient needs to be available for two appointments to receive both doses of the vaccine, depending on which vaccine we have been issued by the state. We will not be asking anyone for money, your bank account, credit card or social security number. If you receive a call that asks you for this information, it is not from MCHC.
We received the first doses of the Pfizer vaccine in December. Since then we have vaccinated MCHC caregivers, Madelia police, ambulance, and fire departments. We recently vaccinated school staff in Madelia and Lake Crystal with the Moderna vaccine. MCHC is not the only medical entity administering vaccines. If you are contacted by another health care system, by the state or county first, we encourage you to get the vaccine as soon as possible. Unlike the flu vaccine, patients will need to wait until they are called by MCHC to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. There isn’t a special waiting list.
If we are allocated a larger vaccine shipment, notifying patients by phone may not be feasible. We encourage patients to watch our Facebook page and our website www.mchospital.org for the latest information and announcements regarding vaccine distribution.
Concerns about the vaccine’s effectiveness and side effects have been minimal. Among the MCHC caregivers already vaccinated, side effects were rare and not serious. The risks of COVID-19 far outweigh any risk from the vaccine.