IHS-CLINTON SERVICE UNIT HAS NOW OPENED COVID-19 VACCINE TO NON-NATIVE COMMUNITY MEMBERS
Indian Health Service Clinton Service Unit Indian Health Service, Clinton Service Unit (CSU) has moved into the third phase of the vaccination program for COVID-19. Clinton, El Reno, and Watonga Indian Health Centers have extended COVID-19 vaccination priority to American Indian and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) and local non-Native community members 16 years of age and older. The service unit, in partnership with Indian Health Service, is working to ensure the vaccine reaches Indian country as quickly and equitably as possible. As of March 12, 2021, CSU has vaccinated over 4600 individuals. CSU is following vaccination protocol, established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. As CSU moved into the third phase of the vaccination program, the service unit is providing vaccines to local non-Natives in an effort to gain community (or herd) immunity. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, community immunity is when enough members of a community are immunized against a contagious disease, keeping most others protected from infection. CSU is assisting to protect our AI/AN community by providing the vaccine to non-Natives to promote community immunity.“Our goal is to get vaccines into the arms of our community as quickly as possible to slow the spread of COVID-19 and provide an avenue to end the pandemic,” said Captain Joe Bryant, chief executive officer. “The decision to provide vaccine to local non-Native community members was made after significant consultation with Oklahoma City Area leadership and leadership of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes’ and Health Board.”CSU offers the three COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson. To schedule an appointment through CSU for COVID-19 vaccination call 580.331.3433. Those who have had COVID-19 in the last 14 days, or if you have received the monoclonal antibodies for COVID-19 will need to wait for vaccination. You are encouraged to speak with your health care provider to determine when you will be eligible for the vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccines are being held to the same safety standards as all vaccines. For the latest information about authorized vaccines, visit http://www.fda.gov/…/coronavirus…/covid-19vaccines. Clinton Service Unit takes pride in the vision to provide quality health care services focusing on prevention, restoration, and collaborative relationships that “exceed the needs” of our patients, community, and tribal partners. The mission of the Indian Health Service is to raise the physical, mental, social, and spiritual health of American Indians and Alaska Natives to the highest level.