FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nome, Alaska – Norton Sound Health Corporation identified one new case of COVID-19 over the weekend on Sunday, December 20. The individual is a resident of Nome and a close contact of a previously identified case.
As of Monday, December 21, there are 13 active cases in Nome and 1 active case of a regional resident who is outside of the region. Since the mid-November outbreak in Nome, there have been 109 cases identified, and 95 of those have recovered. There are no active cases in the region’s villages.
There was a four-day window with no new cases last week, which allowed NSHC to shift its focus to administering the COVID-19 vaccine. Over 274 vaccines have been administered in Nome. NSHC vaccinated Quyanna Care Center residents and staff, as well as direct-patient-care Nome staff and community-based first responders. NSHC was able to open vaccination access to elders 80 years and older on December 18, and has now extended that availability to elders aged 65 years and older as of December 21.
If you are an elder who is 65 or older, please sign up for an appointment here: https://www.picktime.com/NSHC. Be prepared to wait an additional 15-30 minutes after your appointment as a NSHC staff member monitors for any signs of vaccine reaction.
Another 400 doses of the vaccine is scheduled to arrive today. NSHC will be mobilizing a vaccination team to the region’s villages today, and the route is weather permitting.
On Wednesday, December 16, 2020, NSHC administered one of its first doses of the vaccine to Phillip Dexter, a 96-year-old resident of QCC.
Today, Dexter was asked how he was feeling, and he said he feels no different except “in my arm where the poke was.”
“No different than the smallpox and polio (vaccines),” he said. “Take them to not get sick.”
NSHC is working on a forum, which will publish personal testimonies from residents who have taken the shot once they give consent to share their feedback.
If you have questions regarding the vaccine, please check out this slideshow with frequently asked questions: http://bit.ly/3m2nfHG. You may also call in to NSHC’s Daily Tribal Leader Call every Monday-Thursday at 11 a.m. The call-in line is 1-800-315-638; access code: 03286#.