By Shelley Farrington Lincoln News • January 21, 2021
MILLINOCKET – The path towards greater access to the COVID-19 vaccination is getting more definitive but like everything that’s been associated with the pandemic, information can change daily.
Millinocket Regional Hospital officials have been wading through the changing guidelines to provide the most up-to-date, accurate information to patients and residents of the Katahdin Region.
Earlier this week, through email and social media, citizens were notified of the latest plan that now includes vaccinating patients and residents 70 or older and people who meet the Maine Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines. This includes citizens of the entire Katahdin region from Patten to Lincoln.
“We’re asking our community to help us by self-identifying if they wish to receive the vaccine,” Mackin said, “so that when the time comes that they are eligible, we’ll have a database of people readily available to schedule and vaccinate. We encourage those wishing to be vaccinated to pre-register using our online form at mrhme.org/getvax.”
Those registering online will get a confirmation email and Mackin said because of that it is the preferred method of registering. However, those who don’t have access to a computer can also call (207) 723-7225 to pre-register.
“If choosing to call, please be aware that you will be asked by an automated system to leave your full name, date of birth and phone number,” Mackin said, “you will not receive a phone call back until your vaccination is scheduled.”
It’s important to note, she said, that much of what MRH can do is dependent on the volume of vaccine it receives and that is contingent upon how much the state receives. That number fluctuates due to a variety of variables that is out of anyone’s control.
“The number of people we can vaccinate is dependent on how much vaccine we receive,” Mackin said. “As it comes in, we’ll be administering it. We don’t anticipate we’ll receive all the vaccine we need at once, so we’re asking for patience and know we’re working as efficiently as possible to get citizens vaccinated.”
Todd Phillips, RN, MPH, MRH Infection Preventionist, said he knows the public’s interest is high and MRH is doing what it can to keep people informed while also being mindful of putting out factual information.
“In response to the public’s growing concern, curiosity, and frustration that surrounds COVID vaccine rollout, MRH has provided a way for them to show us their interest in receiving a vaccine and give them some peace of mind,” Phillips said.
Registration on the MRH website and link through the Facebook page will provide officials with a list of residents who want to get vaccinated.
Phillips added, “We are doing our best to make it as easy as possible during these uncertain times.”
For up-to-date information related to the vaccine rollout, please visit https://www.maine.gov/covid19/vaccines.
About Millinocket Regional Hospital
Millinocket Regional Hospital (MRH) is a 25 bed Critical Access Hospital nestled at the base of Baxter State Park that provides vital healthcare services to those who live, work and play in the Katahdin Region. Beyond the friendly staff and award-winning patient care, MRH provides an impressive range of specialty and general services; with a recent expansion resulting in the addition of eight new specialties and a Walk-In Care facility. In 2018, MRH was awarded the Press Ganey ‘Guardian of Excellence Award’ for exceptional patient experience; a nationally-recognized symbol of achievement for hospitals who consistently perform within the top 5%. Providing jobs to approximately 250 people, MRH is the largest employer in the Katahdin Region and a crucial economic driver within its community. For more information, please visit www.mrhme.org or www.facebook.com/MillinocketRegionalHospital