Health & Wellness Educator Bonita Banks, a nurse at South Peninsula Hospital, prepares to remove a dose of the Moderna vaccine from a vial Friday, Jan. 15, 2021 during a vaccination clinic for seniors put on by the hospital and the City of Homer at Christian Community Church in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Health & Wellness Educator Bonita Banks, a nurse at South Peninsula Hospital, prepares to remove a dose of the Moderna vaccine from a vial Friday, Jan. 15, 2021 during a vaccination clinic for seniors put on by the hospital and the City of Homer at Christian Community Church in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Additional vaccines being offered this weekend

Definition of health care worker has been expanded

South Peninsula Hospital still has some COVID-19 vaccine doses available after this past weekend’s clinic, and is offering them to eligible people in another clinic coming up this weekend.

The hospital already had a follow-up vaccine clinic scheduled for this weekend in order to administer the second doses to seniors and health care workers who got their first shot during the first mass vaccine clinic in January. Hospital Public Information Officer Derotha Ferraro said the hospital is making the remaining doses available for any eligible person to sign up for at this weekend’s clinic as well.

At this past weekend’s clinic, a total of 655 vaccine doses were administered. Of those, 135 were second doses for those who had already gotten their first shot.

The hospital administered 520 doses of the Moderna vaccine to seniors over 65 years old. That’s out of the 600 doses the hospital received from the state, Ferraro said.

“So now we have some remaining doses available,” she said.

Appointments for those remaining doses can be made starting at 1 p.m. today on the hospital’s website www.sphosp.org. Those who need assistance making an appointment can also call the city’s help line at 907-435-3188.

Though this weekend’s clinic was originally designed to administer second doses to people who had already gotten their first shot, Ferraro said hospital staff realized they could also accommodate people getting their first dose at the same event. Thus, the hospital will offer the left over vaccine doses.

If there are still left over doses after this weekend’s clinic, Ferraro said the hospital will reach out to hospitalized patients who may want to receive the vaccine upon their discharge, and home health patients who would otherwise have trouble accessing the vaccine.

Currently eligible people are seniors aged 65 and older, and health care workers in the tiers the state has already authorized. The state recently expanded the definition of the health care worker to include some people who provide in-home care for an elder or older family member.

“These may be paid, unpaid or contracted positions,” the expanded definition reads. See the full expanded definition of a health care worker on the hospital’s website. Ferraro said the hospital is offering the left over vaccine doses this weekend in part to try to catch any health care workers who thought they were ineligible before.

For full definitions of each tier eligible to get the vaccine, visit the state’s eligibility webpage at dhss.alaska.gov/dph/Epi/id/Pages/COVID-19/vaccineavailability.aspx.

Reach Megan Pacer at mpacer@homernews.com.

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