Conway Medical Center received 975 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on the morning of Monday, December 14, 2020. Vaccinations of frontline healthcare workers are underway. CMC will follow CDC guidelines and vaccinate those employees at the highest occupational risk of contracting COVID-19. No employee is required to receive the vaccine.
More vaccine shipments are expected in the coming weeks and months.
CMC Ready to Respond
“Conway Medical Center is ready to continue to the next stage in the fight against COVID-19 with the vaccine,” said Bret Barr, President and CEO of Conway Medical Center. “I cannot stress enough how proud I am of our team and their hard work and dedication to make sure CMC was prepared and eligible to be one of the first hospitals in the state enrolled in DHEC’s vaccine provider network and now among the first in the country to receive the vaccine. This has been a stressful and often exhausting time for workers in the medical field, but our team has shown once again why they are the leaders in healthcare in Horry County.”
CMC has been preparing for vaccine distribution since March, purchasing an additional freezer and medical supplies needed to effectively administer the vaccinations.
“At the very beginning of this pandemic, we immediately created a small group to plan for both countywide testing and for distribution of a vaccine,” said Brian Argo, Chief Financial Officer at CMC. “As we receive more vaccine shipments, CMC will continue to care for our community and provide vaccinations as we move through each phase of the process.”
Who will get the vaccine first?
In the first phases of CMC’s distribution plan, we are following SCDHEC and the CDC’s stipulation that hospital medical staff and frontline employees will receive the first available doses of the vaccine. It could be spring before the vaccination is available to the general public.
In subsequent phases, CMC will work closely with SCDHEC and the CDC to ensure we are meeting the overarching goal to effectively and equitably distribute the vaccine, based on the most current federal guidance and recommendations.
“We are certainly hopeful this vaccine will prove to be the game-changer we need in the fight against COVID-19,” said Dr. Paul Richardson, CMC Chief Medical Officer. “Data from the company suggests the vaccine is both safe and highly effective. I do want to caution that this is not an overnight fix though. It will likely take months for vaccines to be available to the general public. In the meantime, we all need to continue our preventative measures of wearing masks, hand washing, and social distancing.”