Local government first responders in Del Norte County had their first opportunity to receive the COVID-19 vaccine Jan. 4. Firefighters from Crescent City Fire & Rescue, Gasquet Volunteer Fire Department and Crescent City Police Department who opted to take the vaccine received their first vaccination of the two-shot series Monday evening.
“Our local volunteer firefighters and police officers are often the first ones on scene of emergency situations where members of our community may be ill or having a medical emergency,” Fire Chief Bill Gillespie said.
The opportunity to receive the vaccination was made possible through the coordination and assistance of Del Norte County Public Health. Each time vaccinations are given, public health must obtain the vaccine doses, process screening information from each recipient and make sure the vaccination records are entered into the California Immunization Registry. Vaccine recipients must also be observed following their shot to watch for any reaction to the vaccine.
Cal-Ore Life Flight assisted by providing flight nurses who administered the vaccine, as well as an advanced Life Support ambulance to be on standby to monitor for any adverse or allergic reactions; there were none. Most who received the vaccination reported a sore shoulder and a few had mild fatigue the following day, but no other issues were noted.
Gillespie was glad that the COVID-19 vaccine is being offered to local first responders.
“Having the opportunity for our firefighters and police officers who wanted to receive the COVID-19 vaccine helps us better serve our community by helping keep our people healthy,” he said.
The community is reminded to continue to use your mask, practice social distancing, sanitize surfaces and spaces and wash your hands regularly.