SUBSCRIBER EXCLUSIVE

First COVID-19 vaccinations begin in Goodyear

POD at Abrazo West Campus is one of five sites dispensing 1A vaccines

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Frontline health care workers and first responders from around the Southwest Valley began receiving first-round COVID-19 vaccines on the Abrazo West Campus in Goodyear on Monday, Dec. 21, as health officials rolled out Phase 1A of their vaccination plan.

They will receive their second, final round of vaccinations in three to four weeks.

Abrazo Health is part of a countywide collaboration of health care providers to distribute initial doses of COVID-19 vaccine. In Phase 1A, the Maricopa County Department of Public Health is working with partners to operate five point of dispensing PODs in the Southwest, Northwest, Central, Northeast and Southeast parts of the county, officials stated in a release.

“We are working with Maricopa County public health through its POD system to offer vaccinations in accordance with FDA, CDC, state and local guidelines,” Abrazo West Campus CEO Christina Oh stated. “Our staff have been preparing for weeks to handle logistics and operations. I am so impressed with the dedication I’ve seen, not only for this effort, but by everyone in the hospital working night and day to care for our patients.”

Goodyear Police Department officials advised residents to avoid the area around the hospital, 13677 W. McDowell Road, specifically Palm Valley Boulevard and McDowell Road, between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. daily through Thursday, Dec. 31, and from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Christmas Eve.

Only those who have been prescreened and scheduled appointments will be vaccinated, officials said.

Anyone with non-vaccine appointments on the hospital campus should enter on 136th Drive, GYPD officials advised.

READ: Weekly COVID-19 cases in Goodyear up 551 to 5,518

To be included in the first phase of vaccinations, health care workers must register by visiting maricopa.gov/5641/COVID-19-Vaccine and clicking the Phase 1A Pre-Screening Page link.

After completing an online screening questionnaire, those who are eligible will receive a follow up message for scheduling a vaccination with a regional vaccine provider based on the location of the individual’s primary worksite.

“We are pleased to join this historic effort and have been working with state and county public health to coordinate dispensing centers,” Abrazo Health CEO Brian Elisco said. Abrazo West Campus is partnering with other Abrazo hospitals and Valleywise Health to provide staff to operate the POD.

As the pandemic continues, Abrazo officials remind residents how they can help slow the virus’ spread.

“We urge everyone to protect themselves and others by wearing a mask in public, using proper hand hygiene and practicing social distancing,” Abrazo Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. William Ellert said. “Arizona is entering flu season as well. If you haven’t had a flu shot, it’s not too late to get one. These simple precautions can help protect our communities.”

Sign-ups and prescreening are not available for phases beyond 1A, county officials advised.

Those eligible for Phase 1A vaccinations include health care workers who provide patient care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, outpatient clinics, home health care, pharmacies, public health and education (school nurses and health care personnel), according to the county’s website, maricopa.gov/covid.

To learn more about subsequent phase timelines and who will potentially be included, click here.

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