Shenandoah University will aid in local vaccination efforts starting this week at the request of the local hospital system, Valley Health.
Approximately 20 faculty and staff will help during the first two weeks of administration. Those in health professions, pharmacy and nursing (adjunct or full-time) who are credentialed to give vaccines will help administer the vaccine. Health care observers will watch for side effects immediately after participants receive a shot, while other faculty and staff will perform clerical and data entry duties.
Additional faculty and staff will be called upon to help in the ensuing weeks. So far, about 60 individuals at Shenandoah have signed up to help.
Since March, Valley Health and Shenandoah have partnered together in the fight against COVID-19. Valley Health outlined appropriate guidelines for the university and participated in discussions on testing. When testing was scarce in the region, Shenandoah’s Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy developed a COVID-19 saliva test, which relieved the pressure on the limited supply of local tests. Shenandoah also donated thousands of masks and three ventilators to the hospital system.
Valley Health and the local health department have demonstrated state-of-the-art leadership and expertise throughout this pandemic. I would stack the quality of the local response up against any area of the country. Shenandoah is honored to be the third leg of this regional healthcare triangle. Many of the nurses, physician assistants and respiratory therapists who are treating COVID-19 patients locally are graduates of Shenandoah University. And now, with Valley Health leading the local vaccination efforts, SU is pleased and honored to have been invited to assist in distributing this long-awaited vaccine. Our employees have eagerly stepped forward to volunteer their time and their expertise to support Valley Health’s work in securing the public’s health.”
President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D.
Valley Health will provide training and personal protective equipment to faculty and staff, who will also be eligible for vaccination for their role in the vaccine rollout.
“We are excited to be receiving this first shipment of vaccine, which is an important milestone in stopping the spread of the virus, both in our community and nationally. At an especially challenging time for our caregivers, we are grateful to have the assistance of our healthcare partners at Shenandoah University to help us vaccinate our essential staff safely and efficiently.
Mark Nantz, Valley Health President and CEO
If necessary, Shenandoah will be able to house vaccines at the appropriate cold temperature in a freezer located on campus.