(BROOKLYN) – The Northeast District Department of Health (NDDH), which provides public health services for 12 northeast Connecticut towns, hit a milestone on November 1st at their standing Tuesday vaccination clinic by administering their 15,000th dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
The recipient was Pomfret resident Earl Semmelrock who is also a past board member of NDDH. “I recently learned that I was eligible for my booster dose, so I came right down to NDDH to receive it,” said Semmelrock. “The process here has always been quick and easy and I feel better knowing that I am better protected against COVID-19 as we head into the holiday season.”
NDDH Public Health Nurse Janine Vose, who delivered the booster shot to Semmelrock, reflected on the NDDH effort. “I remember the anticipation and excitement of the COVID-19 vaccines first arriving in December of 2020,” recalled Vose. “After a year of battling COVID with prevention strategies like handwashing, social distancing, and wearing masks, we knew this would be the tool to help prevent hospitalizations and deaths from COVID. I was one of the first to be vaccinated and am grateful to have been part of a team that has delivered so many illness-reducing and life-saving vaccinations.”
NDDH worked closely with Day Kimball Healthcare and Generations Family Health Center throughout the pandemic to coordinate vaccination efforts in northeast Connecticut. In addition, they deployed volunteer members of their Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) and partnered with the Quinebaug Valley Senior Citizens Center to hold regular vaccination clinics. They also enhanced further access to vaccination by working with town leaders, schools, and many other community partners to provide mobile vaccination clinics.
“When it comes to vaccinations, our health department has always been seen as a gap-filler, catching those individuals who for any reason have been unable to access vaccination through traditional channels,” explained NDDH Director of Health Sue Starkey. “The pandemic required an extraordinary effort, so our team and MRC stepped up in those early days, and here we are two years and 15,000 doses later, still providing this essential service to our populations. It’s also important to note that we have provided these doses at no charge and have not sought reimbursement for administering the vaccine.”
NDDH holds a standing vaccination clinic every Tuesday from 3 to 6pm at the health department office located at 69 South Main Street in Brooklyn, offering Pfizer, Moderna, and Novavax primary dose vaccines, and the updated bivalent booster doses from Pfizer for ages 5 and older, and Moderna for ages 6 and older.
“There are many respiratory viruses circulating right now so it’s important to get vaccinated,” Vose said. “It will bolster your immune system and improve your chances to enjoy a healthy holiday season.”
The health department also offers seasonal flu vaccine at no charge for children ages 3 to 18. Adult seasonal flu vaccine is available to those over age 18 at a cost of $30, cash only, no insurances accepted.
For more information, visit: https://www.nddh.org/services/emergency-preparedness/covid-19-vaccination/
Find COVID-19 vaccines for all ages, including 6 months+ at https://www.vaccines.gov/.