In an effort to reach residents who may have had to travel some distance to receive their COVID-19 vaccines, Park County Public Health Department contacted Fire Chiefs Susan Bernstetter of Lake George and Eugene Farmer of Southern Park County (Guffey) Fire Protection Districts about the possibility of joining efforts with University of Colorado Health to provide this service. The idea was welcomed and on Feb. 10, 226 residents of Lake George, Guffey, and other areas received their first vaccination at LGFPD Station 1 in Lake George.
Staff members of Pikes Peak Regional Hospital under the direction of Larry Tremmel, Regional Pharmacy Director and Michael Rodriquez, Chief Nursing Officer administered the vaccinations while being assisted by volunteer members of LGFPD and SPCFPD to help with the flow of patients. Ambulances from SPCFPD and Ute Pass Regional Ambulance District were on standby in case of any reactions to the vaccine. Fortunately, their services weren’t called to action.
“This was the first time doing an off-site operation, and it was very successful. We weren’t sure what to expect, but it was good to get out into the community,” said Rodriquez.
Jocelyn Rosedo, Emergency Preparedness and Response Coordinator for Park County, explained she was there to offer support by providing porta-potties, notifying law enforcement, and providing food to the staff from the Incident Management Group.
“We were extremely excited to provide the space to offer this service for our community. It was well received and they (Pikes Peak Regional Hospital staff) did all the work,” remarked Kelly Borders, Administration Assistant, LGFPD.
“I came to thank them all for serving Park County residents in this manner. I was amazed at how well it was done; they ran a tight ship and were very efficient,” said Amy Mitchell, Park County Commissioner.
The vaccinations were made available by appointment only, and all will return March 3 to receive the second dose of the series. If necessary, they may schedule another like clinic in the future.