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Pharmacy Faculty Join COVID Vaccination Effort

College of Pharmacy associate professors Danielle M. Candelario, PharmD, and Sneha Srivastava, PharmD, BCACP, CDE, didn’t hesitate to answer the Lake County Health Department’s call for volunteers to administer the newly released COVID-19 vaccines.

Drs. Candelario and Srivastava both started volunteering in late December to staff drive-thru vaccination clinics sponsored by the Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center (LCHD). Within the first week, more than 660 frontline healthcare workers received their first doses of the COVID vaccine.

“I just feel lucky to be part of this process — I’m proud to represent our profession and grateful that I'm able to contribute during a public health crisis,” Dr. Candelario said. “When we are out there and it’s snowing and we’re in five layers of clothes, there’s nowhere I would rather be than talking to patients and administering vaccines.”

Dr. Srivastava, who is also a member of the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) of Lake County, agrees. “I was so excited at the opportunity to be part of a team for this effort, to use my skills to help deliver vaccines to frontline health workers and to do it in a system that works so well.”

Both pharmacists cite organization, flexibility and interprofessionalism as essential elements of the health department’s COVID vaccination program, which requires 50 to 100 volunteers a day. “It’s not just the vaccinators. It’s the IT folks, the screeners, the traffic control people, the safety people, and the providers. Everyone is executing their jobs to the highest level,” said Dr. Candelario. She noted that RFU students are also beginning to assist with vaccine administration.

Individuals who live or work in Lake County are eligible to register with the LCHD’s AllVax portal and be notified when appointments are available for COVID vaccinations. Visit RFU’s COVID-19 webpage for additional COVID vaccine resources.

Posted January 17, 2021
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