By Joe Morey
As of Tuesday, Jan. 5, there have been 123 vaccinations given at the LCO Health Center, according to Health Director Gary Girard. He told the LCO Tribal Governing Board (TGB) that all 65 doses from Pfizer were given and additionally, 58 from the Moderna shipment were given. The Tribe received a total of 200 Moderna vaccines the prior week. The remaining 142 doses were scheduled to be given over this last week Wednesday through Friday.
Girard told the TGB the clinic currently has a long list of people who want the vaccine and that the list is growing every day.
On Wednesday, Jan. 6, LCO Chairman Louis Taylor and Vice-Chairwoman Lorraine Gouge, along with three members of LCO Health Center administration, received their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine after receiving the first dose on Wednesday, Dec. 16. They were the first five persons at LCO and Sawyer County to receive the Covid-19 vaccine.
Girard, Dr. Steven Miszkiewicz, the medical director and staff physician, Dr. Harry Malcomb, joined tribal leadership in receiving the first vaccinations.
Girard said in addition to medical and emergency personnel, essential workers are included in this first phase of vaccinations. They include tribal workers who are going into people’s homes, working on the floor dealing with people and essential staff, such as accounting personnel, who need to work to keep tribal services moving.
“Once the essential workers are vaccinated, then we’ll move on to our most at-risk members who include elders over 75,” Girard explained.
In his report, Girard said there are currently 18 active cases at LCO, which is down from 30 cases the week before.
“This is good news, but we are expecting a small upsurge due to the Christmas holiday,” Girard noted. “We saw a small surge after Thanksgiving but it wasn’t nearly what we expected. We had 16 cases at Thanksgiving time that increased to the 30 cases just before Christmas and now we are down to 18.”
Girard said we may soon see a downturn to the virus because of immunities built up from persons having had the virus and because of the increasing number of vaccinations given.
From L-R receiving their 2nd Pfizer dose are Health Director Gary Girard, LCO Chairman Louis Taylor and LCO Vice Chairwoman Lorraine Gouge.