More vaccines arrive in Lambton for long term care

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David Schludi Photo

Lambton Public Health will ramp up its vaccination of residents in long term care Monday.

Public health officials say they received 600 doses of Moderna Friday morning and will be back out at Lambton long term care homes Monday giving the vaccines to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The elderly, particularly those in long term care, are very vulnerable to the respiratory illness. Almost 3,700 seniors in long term care, including 24 in Lambton, have died of COVID-19.

Lambton’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Sudit Ranade, says five homes – including Fiddicks in Petrolia – had already been vaccinated and most residents are rolling up their sleeves to be protected from COVID-19.

Ranade told The Independent Monday that even with the 600 doses, it would not be enough to make sure everyone in long term care and high risk retirement homes had their first shot of the two dose vaccine.

“And not only that, but but we also have to plan ahead in the future doses that come to us are going to need to go first second doses of people as well as first doses if we get enough,” says Ranade.

The province had given itself a deadline of Feb. 5 to vaccinate everyone in long term care however in late January, the shipments of vaccine from the federal government began to dwindle and there were few to send out.

The Ford Government had prioritized some regions and sent thousands of vaccines which were initially given to long term care residents, their essential care givers, health care workers both in long term care and hospitals. When the supplies began to dry up, the province decided only those in long term care would receive the vaccine for now.

But there were 14 health units, including Lambton, which has only received shipments of about 600 at a time.