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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

Memphis VA Medical Center to begin vaccinating front line workers this week

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced publication of its dynamic VA Vaccination Distribution Plan.
Credit: WATN

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — UPDATE 12/15/2020 - The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs today announced publication of its dynamic VA Vaccination Distribution Plan, and the Memphis Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center will begin vaccinating frontline health care employees this week.

This follows the Food and Drug Administration’s Dec. 11 decision to issue an Emergency Use Authorization for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.

Memphis VA Medical Center is one of the first 37 VA sites across the country selected to provide the vaccines for its ability to vaccinate large numbers of people and store the vaccines at extremely cold temperatures.

“The safety of our Veterans and staff is a priority and we welcome the opportunity to be among the first of the VA facilities to distribute the vaccine” said Memphis VA Chief Executive, David K. Dunning.

“VA employees have provided life-saving COVID-19 care to thousands upon thousands of people, and this plan demonstrates how the department continues to play a crucial role in the nation’s response to the pandemic,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie.

The plan released today addresses vaccinations for Veterans, staff, and other federal partners, and includes a risk stratification framework for identifying the population(s) at highest risk to receive the vaccine. The plan will be updated over the next two weeks to reflect final recommendations and specifications from FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on COVID-19 vaccines authorized through FDA’s Emergency Use Authorization process.

The plan covers vaccine distribution in the United States, Puerto Rico, and U.S. territories where VA provides health care to Veterans, as well as vaccine safety monitoring and vaccine reporting as required by the CDC and Operation Warp Speed.

Veterans seeking additional information should visit the VA Coronavirus Vaccine FAQs webpage or contact their care team.

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12/14/2020 - Memphis Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center has been selected as one of 37 VA sites to receive initial doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

The VAMC was selected for its ability to vaccinate large numbers of people and store the vaccines at extremely cold temperatures.

In accordance with Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, Memphis VA Medical Center will begin vaccinating health care personnel and Veterans in VA’s long-term health care facilities once the vaccine has been received. COVID-19 vaccine implementation will include an initial limited-supply phase followed by a general implementation phase, when large supplies of the vaccine will be available to Veterans who want to receive one. Our ultimate goal is to offer it to all Veterans and employees who want to be vaccinated. As more vaccine becomes available, we will begin to schedule appointments with eligible Veterans.

RELATED: Memphis VA is taking steps to protect local veterans from COVID-19

“The safety of our Veterans and staff is a priority and we welcome the opportunity to be among the first of the VA facilities to distribute the vaccine” said Memphis VA Chief Executive, David K. Dunning.

Veterans seeking additional information can click here or contact their Care team.