VCU set to receive about 4,000 doses of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine

Updated: Dec. 8, 2020 at 4:24 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - VCU Health says its been slated about 4,000 doses of Pfzier’s COVID-19 vaccine. It could be here next week.

“In the hospital on a daily basis and take care of the patients and many folks are at risk for being exposed. So we are very excited to have this forthcoming,” VCU Medical Center Interim Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Lanning said.

Virginia Commonwealth University is one of 17 ultra-cold storage facilities identified by the Virginia Department of Health for the Pfizer vaccine. The health system has multiple units to handle COVID-19 vaccines. Each can hold about 50,000 doses.

“We have purchased another one just to ensure we have enough space and it’s in our pharmacy area that is used to working with those freezers and storing all those medical supplies on a regular basis,” Dr. Lanning said.

VCU has a plan in place to vaccinate health care workers first. That will include those working at nursing homes, emergency room department workers, and then high-volume medical units where COVID-19 could quickly spread.

“We have created our sort of prioritization based on our health care workers’ risk of acquiring the virus and the potential consequences if they were affected,” Dr. Lanning said.

As for security concerns, Dr. Lanning says as a hospital they are used to dealing with those types of issues.

“We have fantastic security here at VCU and there are lots of medications and materials and so forth that are valuable and secure so we don’t anticipate any problems,” said Dr. Lanning.

In a statement VDH says, “We have identified hospital systems with ultracold storage throughout the state to ensure coverage in every region. At this point, we are not identifying specific facilities. But suffice it to say, arrangements have been made to ensure vaccine storage and availability across the commonwealth.”

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