Santa Clara Valley Medical Center Hospitals and Clinics Administer First COVID-19 Vaccines to Frontline Hospital Workers

December 17, 2020

The Healthcare Delivery System has received 3,900 doses for three hospitals and began administering them to ICU and Emergency Department staff on Thursday, December 17

Santa Clara County, CA – The Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, Hospitals and Clinics received the first shipment of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, with 3,900 doses now available for all three hospitals within the system, including Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, O’Connor Hospital, and St. Louise Regional Hospital. The first doses were administered to frontline workers in the Intensive Care Units and Emergency Departments on Thursday.

“Even though it lasted just seconds, administering the first vaccine represents an incredible moment in history. With this vaccine we can begin to relieve the crushing burden on our healthcare workers and start our journey back to better days,” said Dr. Narinder Singh, Director of Pharmacy Services for the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center.  “Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools we have available and I look forward to the time when all Americans can be vaccinated.”

Joshua Fuller, a 37-year-old registered nurse within the Medical Intensive Care Unit at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, was one of the first to receive the vaccine on Thursday. He described the feeling as similar to getting a flu shot.

“It feels good to start getting some of this going and getting things back to normal,” Fuller said, adding that the vaccine allows him to feel more confident when he goes back to work in a high-risk setting. He looks forward to receiving the second dose of the vaccine, which will maximize its effectiveness.

Another shipment of vaccines is expected next week that includes 2,925 additional doses from Pfizer-BioNTech, along with 5,700 doses from Moderna, Inc., if it receives emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. 

Health officials expressed relief for this important defense against the virus, while cautioning that it is only one tool against a pandemic that has yet to let up its grip on the country and on an overstretched healthcare system. The public is reminded to wear face coverings, practice social distancing, and avoid gathering with those outside of their household.

The County continues to receive information from the State of California about vaccine allocation, requirements, and timelines. More information about COVID-19 vaccines is available on the County’s website.

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