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COVID-19 vaccinations rolled out in Lee

Lee Health begins to offer inoculations to health care workers; DOH-Lee to those 65 and older

By Staff | Dec 30, 2020

news@breezenewspapers.com

Lee Health administered the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to employees on Tuesday with a limited number of inoculations made available to front-line healthcare workers and those 65 and older beginning Monday through the Department of Health – Lee County.

The health care provider has received 2295 doses at Gulf Coast Medical Center and 1,950 at Cape Coral Hospital, according to Lee Health spokesperson Jonathon Little.

Registered nurse Samara Marin, Henry Jackson with transportation services, and Dr. Stephanie Stovall with pediatric infection prevention, were the first to receive the vaccine.

“We are ready. Lee Health has followed guidelines from the CDC and the State of Florida to establish our vaccination plan,” said Larry Antonucci, M.D., MBA, president and CEO of Lee Health. “This vaccine provides hope that we can soon put an end to this long, arduous journey. I am so proud of our frontline workers. Throughout this pandemic, they never wavered in their commitment to provide safe, compassionate care to our patients.”

To ensure a safe and effective rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, it is being administered at Gulf Coast Medical Center and Cape Coral Hospital where the health system has deployed deep freezers to keep the vaccine at the appropriate temperatures. Vaccination of health care workers and patients in Lee Health’s three skilled nursing facilities began today as well.

Due to demand for the vaccine, supplies are limited at first. Currently, there is no official timetable on when the public will be able to receive the vaccination through Lee Health. Upon availability, Lee Health will begin to schedule appointments for those who want to be vaccinated. The health system will have more information to share in the coming weeks.

Those 65 and older with proof of age, and health care workers with proof of employment, may obtain the vaccine today through the FDOH at the following locations. Appointments are not required but supplies are limited with 300 doses available at each site. Hours are 9 a.m. – noon and 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. The vaccine is free.

Wednesday, Dec. 30

• N. Fort Myers Recreation Center

2000 N Recreation Parkway

North Fort Myers, FL 33903

n Lakes Regional Library

15290 Bass Road

Fort Myers, FL 33919

• Cultural Park Theater

528 Cultural Park Blvd.

Cape Coral, FL 33919

These are not drive-thru sites; all sites are ADA compliant. To expedite the registration process, you may visit https://www.leegov.com/vaccine to download, print and complete the consent form prior to visiting one of the vaccination sites.

Lee Health urges the public to continue wearing marks and following all pandemic protocol.

“While we wait for the vaccine to become widely available in our community, we ask that residents and visitors continue to practice physical distancing, wear a mask in public and wash their hands often,” said Dr. Alex Daneshmand, chief quality and patient safety officer at Lee Health in a statement. “Until we reach herd immunity and the CDC changes its guidance on wearing PPE (personal protective equipment), Lee Health staff will continue to wear the appropriate level of PPE even after they are vaccinated.”