Health care workers at Olivia Hospital & Clinic received some of the region’s first COVID-19 vaccines, marking a local milestone in the fight against the pandemic.
Amy Gasca, LPN was among the first health care workers at the Olivia Hospital to receive the preventive shot. Research has shown that the two-dose vaccines coming to market are close to 95 percent effective at preventing COVID-19. In addition, large-scale clinical trials involving tens of thousands of people found the vaccines to be very safe.
Nathan Blad, president of Olivia Hospital and Clinic, stated, “For Renville County, West Central Minnesota and beyond, the arrival of these vaccines is a great relief … Even though this may be a turning point, we’re not out of the woods. It will take many months until we have widespread immunization against COVID-19.”
The vaccines now available to health care workers and long-term care residents won’t be available to the broader public for many months. Rob Kemp, MD, along with other state and federal health officials, urge everyone to continue following infection prevention best-practices including social distancing, masking, frequent hand-washing and other measures.