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Doctor drives three hours to get Covid-19 vaccine to rural Michigan hospital – CNN

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Dr. Richard Bates drove almost 150 miles earlier this month to take a cooler carrying 130 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine from the MidMichigan Medical Center in Midland to their hospital in Alpena — a city of about 10,000 people on Lake Huron’s Thunder Bay.
The trip takes almost three hours each way and Alpena’s about 70 miles from the interstate, so much of the drive is on two-lane roads.
Bates is an OB-GYN doctor and the regional vice president of medical affairs at MidMichigan Health, which received a shipment of 2,925 doses of the vaccine on December 16.
He was on the road hours after a UPS truck made the delivery, and the first doses were administered in Alpena later that day.
It was just two days after an ICU nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens, New York City, became one of the first people in the United States to get the vaccination.
MidMichigan Health also shipped doses to other facilities in its system, which serves 23 counties.
Bates is from Alpena and compared delivering the vaccine to his hometown to delivering a baby.
“Seeing our staff receive the vaccine was an unbelievable experience, much like delivering a new baby and handing that baby of to parents, who have just spent months and sometimes years thinking and dreaming and placing their hopes in that baby,” he told CNN’s Bianna Golodryga. “To see our staff with tears and taking pictures of them getting the vaccine and sharing it with their families — it was quite special.”
The US government’s Operation Warp Speed had promised to that 20 million vaccine doses would be administered by January 1, but that effort is behind schedule.
The Pfizer vaccine has to be kept at ultra-cold temperatures, which creates a logistical challenge for smaller hospitals and facilities that don’t have special freezers that can reach at least minus-75 degrees Celcius. It can be packed in dry ice for transport and can be kept in a refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Health officials around the US have been preparing for months to distribute the vaccines and deliver them safely to far-flung communities.
MidMichigan Medical Center bought two ultra-cold freezers before the Pfizer vaccine was authorized by the FDA.
Another vaccine by Moderna can be stored at minus-20 degrees Celsius and kept in a refrigerator for up to 30 days before it expires.
The vaccine is providing a glimmer of hope for health care workers, who are struggling to care for record numbers of Covid-19 cases.
Bates said that helping deliver the vaccine has been a powerful experience.
“The feelings in the room and the emotions were tangible, they were real and that was just really something special to be part of,” he said.
He’s made another delivery since then and has two more trips scheduled next week.

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Latest COVID update Jan. 23: 3 deaths, 306 recoveries, 274 new cases – CKOM News Talk Sports

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Three more COVID-related deaths were reported in the province, bringing the provincial total to 250 Saskatchewan residents who have died after testing positive for the coronavirus.

One death reported was in the 50 to 59 age group from the north-central zone, one in the 60 to 69 age group from the far northeast zone and one death was from an individual in the 80+ age group from the far northwest zone.

Recoveries once again outweighed new cases. It was the third time in the last four days, as the province reported 306 new recoveries along with 274 new cases.

The new cases are located in the far northwest (50), far north-central (10), far northeast (16), northwest (41), north-central (19), northeast (16), Saskatoon (51), central-west (three), central-east (five), Regina (41), southwest (one) and southeast (11) zones and 10 new cases have a pending location.

Ten cases with pending residence information were assigned to the far northeast (three), northwest (five) and north-central (two) zones.

One previously reported case in the Saskatoon zone has been found to be an out-of-province resident and was removed from the counts.

There are 197 people with COVID-19 in hospitals throughout the province, an increase of 20 hospitalizations compared to Thursday’s numbers.

In total, there are 162 people that are receiving inpatient care in the far northwest (four), northwest (13), north-central (22), Saskatoon (70), central-west (two), central-east (eight), Regina (36), southwest (two), south-central (one) and southeast (four) zones.

The other 35 people are in intensive care in the northwest (two), north-central (four), Saskatoon (18), central-east (one), Regina (nine) and south-central (one) regions.

COVID-19 vaccines continue to be administered as 1,110 doses were used in Saskatchewan on Friday, 338 less than Thursday’s total- this brings the total number of vaccines administered in the province to 32,385.

The doses were administered in the Regina (148), Saskatoon (34), far north-central (nine), far northeast (10), northeast (56), northwest (449), central-east (320) and southeast (84) zones.

Saskatchewan now has the highest percentage of administration of doses received of any province in Canada.

There are now 3,161 active cases of COVID-19 throughout the province.

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Couple charged after travelling to Yukon to get COVID-19 vaccine – WellandTribune.ca

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WHITEHORSE – A cabinet minister says a couple from outside Yukon travelled to a remote community in the territory this week and received doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

Community Services Minister John Streiker says he’s outraged the man and woman allegedly chartered a flight to Beaver Creek, the most westerly community in Canada near the border with Alaska, to get the shots.

Streiker says he heard Thursday night that the Canadian couple arrived in Yukon on Tuesdayand declared they would follow the territory’s mandatory two-week self-isolation protocol, but instead travelled to Beaver Creek.

He says the two people have been charged under Yukon’s Civil Emergency Measures Act for failure to self-isolate and failure to behave in a manner consistent with their declaration upon arrival.

Streiker says the couple allegedly presented themselves as visiting workers, misleading staff at the mobile vaccination clinic in Beaver Creek.

He says territorial enforcement officers received a call about the couple, who were later intercepted at the Whitehorse airport trying to leave Yukon.

The maximum fine under the emergency measures act is $500, and up to six months in jail.

The RCMP have been notified, he said in an interview on Friday.

Streiker hadn’t confirmed where the couple are from, but he said they didn’t show Yukon health cards at the vaccination clinic.

Yukon has two vaccination teams that are visiting communities throughout the territory with priority going to residents and staff of group-living settings, health-care workers, people over 80 who aren’t living in long-term care, and Yukoners living in rural, remote and First Nation communities.

Beaver Creek was chosen as a priority community to receive doses of COVID-19 vaccine because it’s a remote border community, he said.

Yukon’s chief medical officer of health has indicated he believes the risk to the community as a result of the couple’s visit is low, Streiker added.

Streiker said there may be more scrutiny at vaccine clinics when people show up from outside Yukon, but officials are still working through options to prevent such a situation from happening again.

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“I find it frustrating because what that does is it makes more barriers,” he said. “We’ve been trying to remove all barriers to get the vaccine for our citizens and so if there’s another sort of layer of check, I just don’t want it to make it harder for Yukoners to get their vaccines.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 22, 2021.

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Couple charged after travelling to Yukon to get COVID-19 vaccine – Canada News – Castanet.net

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A cabinet minister says a couple from outside Yukon travelled to a remote community in the territory this week and received doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

Community Services Minister John Streiker says he’s outraged the man and woman allegedly chartered a flight to Beaver Creek, the most westerly community in Canada near the border with Alaska, to get the shots.

Streiker says he heard Thursday night that the Canadian couple arrived in Yukon on Tuesdayand declared they would follow the territory’s mandatory two-week self-isolation protocol, but instead travelled to Beaver Creek.

He says the two people have been charged under Yukon’s Civil Emergency Measures Act for failure to self-isolate and failure to behave in a manner consistent with their declaration upon arrival.

Streiker says the couple allegedly presented themselves as visiting workers, misleading staff at the mobile vaccination clinic in Beaver Creek.

He says territorial enforcement officers received a call about the couple, who were later intercepted at the Whitehorse airport trying to leave Yukon.

The maximum fine under the emergency measures act is $500, and up to six months in jail.

The RCMP have been notified, he said in an interview on Friday.

Streiker hadn’t confirmed where the couple are from, but he said they didn’t show Yukon health cards at the vaccination clinic.

Yukon has two vaccination teams that are visiting communities throughout the territory with priority going to residents and staff of group-living settings, health-care workers, people over 80 who aren’t living in long-term care, and Yukoners living in rural, remote and First Nation communities.

Beaver Creek was chosen as a priority community to receive doses of COVID-19 vaccine because it’s a remote border community, he said.

Yukon’s chief medical officer of health has indicated he believes the risk to the community as a result of the couple’s visit is low, Streiker added.

Streiker said there may be more scrutiny at vaccine clinics when people show up from outside Yukon, but officials are still working through options to prevent such a situation from happening again.

“I find it frustrating because what that does is it makes more barriers,” he said. “We’ve been trying to remove all barriers to get the vaccine for our citizens and so if there’s another sort of layer of check, I just don’t want it to make it harder for Yukoners to get their vaccines.”

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