COVID-19 Moderna vaccines that were scheduled to arrive this week for Mercyhealth, OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center and SwedishAmerican in Winnebago County have been delayed. There are a limited number of vaccines available for the entire state. Each county is limited in the amount they can get and the State is limited in the amount that it receives. The delay in shipments will affect the roughly 6,700 patients in Winnebago County who were originally scheduled for their second dose this week. As a result, all three hospitals are awaiting further information on vaccine availability and will contact patients to reschedule their second dose when vaccines become available to them.
We have heard concerns from some community members that not getting the second dose on the original schedule will reduce the effectiveness of the first dose. We want to assure you that Winnebago County Health Department and the local healthcare systems are working with the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to follow best practices in administration of the COVID-19 vaccine. The second dose should be administered as close to the recommended interval as possible. However, the second dose COVID-19 vaccines may be administered up to 6 weeks (42 days) after the first dose according to the CDC without impacting effectiveness.
“We want to assure patients that receiving the second dose of the Moderna vaccine or the Pfizer vaccine up to the six week mark of your first dose is perfectly ok,” said Dr. Stephen Bartlett, Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center. “It does not make the vaccine less effective and you do not need to repeat your initial dose.”
Second dose Pfizer vaccines vary by health system. If your system needs to reschedule your upcoming Pfizer vaccine they will reach out to you directly. Please watch your emails and voicemails for those messages. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.
Those who need a first dose are encouraged to register with as many vaccine sites as possible and to take the first available appointment.
Marketing and Public Relations Director
Winnebago County Health Department
Public Relations/Community Engagement Specialist
SwedishAmerican Health System
Community Relations Coordinator
OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center
5510 E. State St. | Rockford, IL | 61108
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