LENDING A HAND: Doctor’s Hospital joins COVID-19 vaccination effort

LENDING A HAND: Doctor’s Hospital joins COVID-19 vaccination effort
Doctor’s Hospital.

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — As Doctor’s Hospital joins the vaccination rollout effort, the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer Charles Sealy noted that healthcare workers can register for appointments and receive the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine at its main location on Shirley Street.

“The government of The Bahamas has taken the responsibility to identify what vaccines it will render to the Bahamian public,” he told Eyewitness News.

Charles Sealy, chief executive officer, Doctor’s Hospital.

“Doctor’s Hospital, being a healthcare institution, is committed to assisting the government with the rollout of the vaccination through the use of our healthcare professionals where possible, as well as locations that we may have that can assist in getting the mass vaccination as the government has designed.”

Healthcare professionals, residents and staff of nursing homes and uniformed branches are included in the first phase of the rollout.

The hospital’s vaccination appointment system notes that access is only open to healthcare workers.

It reads: “Please do not attempt to make an appointment if you do not fit within this grouping. You will be required to present a valid work ID upon attending your appointment.”

Sealy said the hospital takes its instructions from the government as to which groups can be vaccinated.

“We will work to assist with the rollout of the healthcare professionals,” he explained.

“In particular, we would seek to ensure that the associates at Doctor’s Hospital, along with our medical staff, we will seek to ensure that they are vaccinated as quickly as possible.”

According to Sealy, Doctor’s Hospital has the capacity to offer vaccinations at its Shirley Street location, western location and drive-thru facilities, but for now, solely the main location is being used.

He noted that expansion of its vaccination services will depend on need and some “planning to ensure that we’re able to do it in a safe environment”.

Asked about Doctor’s Hospital’s capacity per day, Sealy said that figure was still being determined.

India donated 20,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses to The Bahamas last week Wednesday.

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis receives his first dose of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine on Sunday, March 14, 2021, at Loyola Hall. (BIS PHOTO/YONTALAY BOWE)

The doses were manufactured in India — one of the largest manufactures of the vaccine — and differ from those manufactured and being distributed throughout Europe.

A pilot program was launched on Sunday, with over 110 people vaccinated at Loyola Hall on Gladstone Road.

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, his wife and Minister of Health Renward Wells were vaccinated on Sunday, along with numerous senior healthcare professionals.

On Thursday, Governor General C A Smith was vaccinated at the facility.

The program expanded to other eligible groups on Wednesday, with Princess Margaret Hospital beginning vaccinations at its Critical Care Block.

About Royston Jones Jr.

Royston Jones Jr. is a senior digital reporter and occasional TV news anchor at Eyewitness News. Since joining Eyewitness News as a digital reporter in 2018, he has done both digital and broadcast reporting, notably providing the electoral analysis for Eyewitness News’ inaugural election night coverage, “Decision Now 2021”.