COMHAR Vaccination Clinic at Vanderwoude

COMHAR initiates COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health

On Friday 3/5/21 the Vanderwoude Center was transformed into a Vaccine Clinic with an agreement and help of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and 15 COMHAR volunteers during the time period of 9am-4pm. As part of the agreement, the Department of Public Health provided four nurses to administer the vaccinations and COMHAR provided the volunteers. LaMar Brooks and Judy Morse were the co-chairs for the vaccine clinic who spearheaded this successful event and immediately began the planning process, meeting continuously over the next two weeks to make this event as seamless as possible. A dedicated team of COMHAR volunteers was responsible for the planning, registration, sanitizing and providing medical staff for a 15-minute observation area after each person received their vaccine. Altogether over 150 individuals received the Pfizer COVID Vaccine including COMHAR staff and participants.

COMHAR’s programs in Northampton County and Montgomery County were vaccinated in February. The Northampton County program vaccinations were coordinated through a longstanding partnership with Hartzell Pharmacy and the Montgomery County sites were vaccinated by Rite Aid with the assistance of the Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) that are part of the state of Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services (DHS).

The Vaccination Task Force, led by LaMar Brooks, continues to make progress on our goals to educate and facilitate vaccination opportunities for our staff and consumers. Plans include an updated package of information: 1) a video that features our New Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Kristin Van Zant and Senior Psychiatrist, Dr. Luis Bird; 2) the latest information on vaccine safety and side effects; 3) answers to your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ); and 4) the latest links to sign up for the public vaccination sites.

COMHAR’s Task Force was enacted in December 2020. Since the inception, the goal was to get as many COMHAR staff and consumers vaccinated as possible. The challenge for the Task Force was the limited availability of vaccines in our area. A mantra was adopted that the Task Force would leave no stone unturned and follow any/all leads received.

Many thanks to Joani Schmeling, MPH, CHES, COVID-19 Testing Program Manager and Hannah Leeman Pandemic, Planner with the City of Philadelphia Department of Public Health, for their support and commitment to help make this event a success. The staff and consumers who received their first vaccines will be scheduled to receive their second shots on 3/26/21 at the next Vanderwoude Vaccine Clinic. COMHAR is working with Genoa, Rite Aid and Centennial Pharmacies to field additional vaccination events at COMHAR facilities. Further updates will be provided.

Judy Morse and LaMar Brooks Co-Chairs of the Vaccine Clinic

Lamar Brooks receiving his vaccine from the nurse

Scene of the Vanderwoude Center Vaccine Clinic

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