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VA Black Hills vaccinates hundreds of veterans against COVID-19

Nearly five-hundred service members received the COVID-19 Moderna shot in a drive-thru Vaccine...
Nearly five-hundred service members received the COVID-19 Moderna shot in a drive-thru Vaccine Blitz.(Nick Nelson)
Published: Jan. 16, 2021 at 8:34 PM MST
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FORT MEADE, S.D. (KEVN) - Since the start of the pandemic, VA hospitals across the nation have been struggling to take care of veterans with the virus. Now, it looks like there’s a light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccine.

It was an exciting Saturday for veterans at the VA Black Hills Health Care Center in Fort Meade who have waited since March for a defense against the coronavirus.

Nearly five-hundred service members received the COVID-19 Moderna shot in a drive-thru Vaccine Blitz.

Amy Doten, Chief of Pharmacy and Vaccine Coordinator for the Black Hills VA said that there is an overwhelming enthusiasm for the vaccine.

“It’s exciting to have this medication to offer to veterans to protect them, and it’s exciting to see that they also want to have it and that they’re here to get it, and to see the smiles, even through the masks,” Doten said.

The first shipment of the vaccine arrived in late December, with more shipments to come in the coming weeks.

Sandra Horsman, the director of the Black Hills VA, said that it feels like this battle against the virus, is nearly over.

“We’ve been fighting this pandemic with no end in sight, not knowing what the next steps we’re going to be, always waiting for the next surge, and this COVID vaccine is kind of like that light at the end of the tunnel, and maybe it’s our chance to win this battle against COVID,” Horsman said.

The Black Hills VA plans to host more vaccine events at both their Fort Meade and Hot Springs locations.

The Black Hills VA is prioritizing those who are 75 years or older and other at-risk veterans.

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