Advertisement

Aspirus administers first community COVID-19 vaccines

Kathy Hendrickson, a Laurium resident, scheduled her COVID-19 vaccine at Aspirus Laurium Clinic and received her first shot this morning.
Kathy Hendrickson, a Laurium resident, scheduled her COVID-19 vaccine at Aspirus Laurium Clinic...
Kathy Hendrickson, a Laurium resident, scheduled her COVID-19 vaccine at Aspirus Laurium Clinic and received her first shot the morning of Jan. 11, 2021.(Aspirus)
Published: Jan. 11, 2021 at 1:17 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

UPPER PENINSULA, Mich. (WLUC) - Aspirus Health Monday began vaccinating the first community members against COVID-19. Last week, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced that the state was expanding COVID vaccine eligibility from Phase 1A to Phase 1B.

Phase 1B includes individuals age 65 and older, as well as “frontline essential workers” – though MDHHS is asking that frontline essential workers be vaccinated through their county health department.

Aspirus is now accepting COVID vaccine appointments for individuals in the U.P. age 65 and older.

“We are excited to offer the vaccine more broadly in our communities,” said Jessica Bessner, PharmD, director of regional pharmacy for Aspirus.

Kathy Hendrickson, a Laurium resident, scheduled her COVID-19 vaccine at Aspirus Laurium Clinic and received her first shot this morning.

“I am excited to finally receive the vaccine,” she said. “This is one step closer to ending this pandemic.”

Patients in the U.P. should contact their Aspirus primary care provider’s office to schedule an appointment. Appointments must be made as no walk-ins are currently being accepted. Vaccines will be scheduled and administered similarly to flu shots, though the COVID-19 vaccine does require two doses, administered a specified number of days apart. Patients will be observed for 15 to 30 minutes after receiving their vaccine and have their second dose scheduled during their visit.

Individuals in Wisconsin cannot yet schedule their COVID vaccine, as states are progressing through eligibility phases differently. Wisconsin remains in phase 1A, which focuses on vaccination of health care workers and long-term care residents.

Aspirus began vaccinating their employees and other health care workers in U.P. communities on December 17.

Aspirus is a non-profit, community-directed health system based in Wausau, Wisconsin. Its 8,700 employees are focused on improving the health and well-being of people throughout Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. Aspirus serves communities through four hospitals in Michigan and six hospitals in Wisconsin, 50 clinics, home health and hospice care, pharmacies, critical care and air-medical transport, medical goods, nursing homes and a broad network of physicians. Aspirus has been recognized for three consecutive years by IBM Watson Health as a Top 15 Health System in its annual study identifying the top-performing health systems in the country. For more information, visit aspirus.org.

Copyright 2021 WLUC. All rights reserved.