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COVID-19 vaccination to begin at local veterans home



FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The COVID-19 vaccine continues to be distributed across the state. Residents and staff at the Arkansas State Veterans Home in Fayetteville will receive their first dose of the Moderna vaccine Tuesday.

The administrator, Buster McCall, said they are working with AllCare Pharmacy. AllCare staff will set up a clinic at the home and all of the employees will be vaccinated in one area. They will go room to room to give all of the residents their COVID-19 shots.

For the past few days, the veterans home educated its community about the vaccine. McCall said he is glad the majority of the residents are on board with receiving it.

“I know one thing that can help us get back to normal it’s that everyone take the vaccine. We need everyone to take the vaccine, just having one or two people taking it is not going to end this,” said McCall.

He said about half of its staff will be vaccinated Tuesday and a second clinic day will be set up to vaccinate those remaining.

Residents and staff can expect to receive the second dose of the Moderna vaccine early February.

Now, he tells us while the vaccine is a step in the right direction, there’s also a need for more staff at the facility. McCall said in recent months, they have lost several staff members who retired or got out of healthcare all together. He said they are committed to keeping residents safe and healthy, but need help making it through these tough times.

“With the quarantines that we have gone through we have relied heavily on one-on-one activities and one-on-one engagements to keep our residents engaged and positive through this.”

McCall said residents miss their families and they try to bridge the gap with zoom calls, facetime and park visits.

The home is in need of nurse aides, food service people and social workers to name a few.
McCall said on top of vaccinations proper staffing is necessary for this battle.