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State readies for arrival of Moderna vaccine, and moving beyond healthcare, nursing homes

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Nemours nurse Vickie Freeman gives a thumbs-up after receiving her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine
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The state of Delaware has received full shipments of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and begun distributions to hospitals while preparing for Moderna’s vaccine to arrive and for vaccinations to go beyond hospitals and nursing homes.

As of Dec. 19, the state has administered a total of 2,061 doses of the Pfizer vaccine, around a quarter of initial shipments, mostly to healthcare workers.  

The Moderna vaccine, which was granted emergency use authorization by the FDA on Dec. 18. 

Delaware health officials anticipates receiving 16,700 doses of the Moderna vaccine, which was granted emergency use authorization by the FDA on Dec. 18, in the coming days, along with 2,925 additional doses of the Pfizer vaccine. 

 

The  vaccine distribution is based on population, and Division of Public Health officials said Monday that as of now, the state does not expect to be finish vaccinating before other states. 

Dr. Rick Hong, medical director of the Division of Public Health, talked about the possibilities and side effects of the vaccine during Gov. John Carney’s weekly COVID-19 press briefing Tuesday, . 

Like the Pfizer vaccine, the Moderna vaccine is not recommended for people who  have had an allergic reaction to the first dose. 

Neither is recommended that peoples who are nursing or pregnant, immunocompromised or have had allergic reactions to other vaccines should consult a doctor before receiving the vaccine. 

 

The second dose of the Moderna vaccine is to be administered four weeks after the first dose, while the Pfizer vaccine’s second dose comes in three weeks. 

Some of the side effects for the Moderna Vaccine include fever, headaches, muscles pain, swollen lymph nodes, nausea and vomiting in about 21% of the people taking the second shot, Hong said. 

 

“Side effects are considered unpleasant, but still mild to potentially moderate,” Hong said, “and it goes away within one to three days.” 

The Wilmington VA medical center announced on Dec. 21 that they will be receiving doses of the Moderna vaccine to begin vaccinating their staff, with hopes that they will soon be able to  vaccinate veterans. 

Hong also announced that the Center for Disease Control’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has confirmed recommendations for vaccination phases 1b and 1c and is now awaiting approval by the state’s ethics committee. 

 

Phase 1b includes high risk essential critical infrastructure workers and adults 75 years and older, especially if at risk of becoming seriously ill or dying if they get the virus. They include people working in industries such as food processing, utilities, education, police, fire, correctional facilities and homeless shelters. Phase 1c includes people aged 65 to 74 years, people aged 16-64 years with high-risk conditions and other essential workers not included in Phase 1b.

The state expects to be finished with Phase 1a — which is healthcare workers and nursing home residents — within 2 months, and to begin phase 2 around march of 2021. Phase 2 includes moderate-risk essential critical infrastructure worker and those with moderate risk of becoming really sick or dying. 

Public Health also has established a Vaccine Call Center open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The number is 1-833-643-1715,

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Booth House Tavern to return to Historic New Castle

A new spot will pay homage to an old name — but with a thoroughly modern approach

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The permits, which allow people to park on the beach, usually sell out after the weather warms up.

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