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Northern Arizona Healthcare Details Recent Vaccination Mandate And Updates Information On COVID

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Officials at Northern Arizona Healthcare are talking further about the decision to implement a vaccine mandate at all of their locations. NAH announced this week that all employees must be vaccinated by December 31st. During a media “zoom” Wednesday, officials say about 80-percent of NAH employees are either fully vaccinated, or planning to be by the end of the year, according to a NAH survey. The percentage of vaccination-hesitant employees with NAH is higher in the Verde Valley area than in Flagstaff. NAH Director of Employee Health Kerry Cassens says since the Pfizer vaccine has been fully-approved by the FDA “several colleagues indicated that they are now willing to get the vaccine.” She adds, “we will provide education and support to our staff and we’ll have open forums and discussions to help staff understand and overcome some of the misinformation about the vaccine.” Officials say hospitals around the country are seeing employee shortages since the start of the pandemic and they are no different. Flagstaff Medical Center’s Chief Medical Officer Derek Feuquay says he is seeing mostly COVID patients between ages 30-and-45 years old. He says “the vast majority of our COVID patients, like in the 90-percent or higher, are unvaccinated and have been admitted for COVID.” Feuquay also says they are seeing younger, healthier people being admitted for COVID. NAH Chief Operating Officer Josh Tinkle says they started to cut back on elective surgeries several weeks ago, due to bed availability. Tinkle also says since NAH came out with its vaccine mandate, there hasn’t been an employee resign because of it as of Wednesday.

The following is a list of clips taken from Wednesday’s virtual media scrum, unedited:

FMC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Derek Feuquay on kids and COVID. Click here:
Dr. Feuquay and NAH Director of Employee Health Kerry Cassens talks about how many employees are vaccinated and those who plan on getting vaccinated by the end of the year. Click here:
Dr. Feuquay talks about the age group he is seeing more at FMC. Click here:
Dr. Feugray says the overwhelming majority of COVID patients at FMC are unvaccinated. Click here:
Dr. Feuguay talks about masking in schools, especially in Yavapai and Coconino counties. Click here:

Northern Arizona Healthcare Chief Operating Officer Josh Tinkle talks about the capacity of their hospitals and are limiting surgeries with this COVID surge. Click here:
Tinkle says they have started to cut back on elective surgeries. Click here:
Tinkle talks about how many travel nurses they are expecting to arrive at NAH facilities soon. Click here:

Dr. John Mougin, chief quality officer, talks about the reasons the 20-percent haven’t been vaccinated as of yet. Click here:

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