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Queen’s vaccinated kupuna at opening of COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Blaisdell today

  • JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Freshly inoculated patients sit in the monitoring area on today at the Blaisdell Concert Hall in Honolulu. Queen’s Medical Center started their vaccination clinic with a soft opening on Saturday, administering 550 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and expect to vaccinate more than 1,200 kupuna 75 years of age and older who made appointments online or by phone for opening day.

    JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Freshly inoculated patients sit in the monitoring area on today at the Blaisdell Concert Hall in Honolulu. Queen’s Medical Center started their vaccination clinic with a soft opening on Saturday, administering 550 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and expect to vaccinate more than 1,200 kupuna 75 years of age and older who made appointments online or by phone for opening day.

The Queen’s Health Systems officially launched its first mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic for kupuna 75 years of age and older at Blaisdell Center Concert Hall at 8 a.m. today.

The clinic, which is staffed by more than 80, will be available to those with appointments from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. daily except Tuesdays.

“On behalf of Queen’s and all our ohana, it is our privilege to be part of this amazing effort,” said Jill Hoggard Green, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Queen’s Health Systems. “I’ve said to you several times that when we look at this devastating disease one of the most important things we can do right now is vaccinate. If we can get vaccinations in our kupuna, in all of our community, as well as continue with our masks and our social distancing, all of those safety practices, we will continue to be one of the safest places in this country, and we will have health and well being and fiscal health and well being in our community.”

Queen’s expected to vaccinate more than 1,200 kupuna 75 and older with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine today after a soft opening on Saturday, in which more than 550 were vaccinated. At its peak, Green said she expects the clinic to be able to vaccinate 5,000 people a day.

Hoggard also said Queen’s would strictly administer the vaccines to those 75 and older at the Blaisdell clinic, only, and not their accompanying caregivers at this time. She heard that four enthusiastic seniors got in line as early as 6 a.m., two hours before the clinic opened today.

So far, more than 12,000 appointments have been scheduled for the Blaisdell clinic. The appointments are scheduled up to a month out, and are only given if both the first and second doses are available.

To date, Queen’s Health Systems has administered more than 20,000 vaccine doses to employees, community health care professionals, people aged 75 and older, and essential workers across the state. That number includes the 550 doses that were given to kupuna during a soft launch of the Blaisdell Clinic on Saturday, January 23.

State and city leaders also toured the Blaisdell clinic to see firsthand the efforts put into running the clinic smoothly, safely and efficiently.

“We are proud to be supporting The Queen’s Health Systems and the Department of Health in standing up the city’s Neal Blaisdell Concert Hall as a community vaccination site,” said Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi in a news release. “Mahalo to the entire Queen’s team for their work to protect some of the most vulnerable members of our community from this deadly virus. This is truly an exciting step forward for the City and County of Honolulu.”

Appointments can be made online or by phone by visiting covid.queens.org/vaccination or calling (808) 691-2222.

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