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Health

Lansing Hospitals Begin Vaccinating Health Pros Against COVID-19

First COVID -19 vaccination at McLaren Hospital photo
WKAR File Photo
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Dr. John Wininger, Pharmacy Operations Manager at McLaren Greater Lansing Hospital, administers the first COVID-19 vaccine to ICU nurse Dawn Chapel.

Lansing's two hospital systems are now vaccinating front line workers against COVID-19.

Unpacking COVID-19 vaccine photo
Credit Scott Pohl / WKAR/MSU
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WKAR/MSU
Sparrow Hospital system director of pharmacy Todd Beldin gets help unpacking the hospital's first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine.

At McLaren Greater Lansing’s main campus on Thursday, Dawn Chapel, an intensive care unit registered nurse with over 30 years of experience, was the first to be vaccinated.

Dr. Linda Peterson is McLaren Greater Lansing’s chief medical officer. For her, “it is a very exciting day. It’s a day of hope for all these health care workers that have been on the front line for many, many months.”

COVID-19 vaccine bottle photo
Credit Scott Pohl / WKAR/MSU
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WKAR/MSU
The Phizer COVID-19 vaccine arrived at Sparrow on Thursday.

McClaren got 975 doses of the Pfizer vaccine here. System-wide, McClaren expects close to 5,000.

Across town at Sparrow Hospital’s main facility, the first shipment of nearly 2,000 doses arrived and the first shots were being administered. Todd Belding is system director of pharmacy. “Oh, it feels great," Belding stated. "It feels like the light at the end of the tunnel is there, like we can see the light. We still have a long tunnel to go through. It’s going to take a long time to get enough vaccination into people to get that herd immunity that we need so that we can go back to the new normal life, but it’s great to be started.”

Box of COVID-19 vaccine bottles
Credit Scott Pohl / WKAR/MSU
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WKAR/MSU
One box holds half of the nearly 2,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses delivered Thursday to Sparrow Hospital in Lansing.

The hospitals plan to vaccinate frontline workers systematically so that no single unit is low on staffers due to side effects that some may experience. Both hospitals planned to vaccinate five health care providers on the first day Thursday, before ramping up distribution in the coming days.

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