By Victoria Gray
SIX NATIONS OF THE GRAND-Health care workers in Six Nation long-term care homes have already started receiving COVID-19 vaccinations, but even more healthcare workers will qualify for them with the release of the Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) emergency control group’s healthcare vaccination priority list.
The SNEC emergency control group released the priority list along with the definition of those who qualify on Wednesday, while cases continue to rise in the community but how quickly the roll-out happens depends on the supply of vaccinations and SNEC has no information on when the next shipment of vaccines will come in.
The priority currently is health care professionals and staff in various locations in the community, long term care residents and Emergency Services Personnel. Vaccinations have been completed at the Iroquois Lodge with the Jay Silverheels Complex (home and community care) next to receive the vaccine.
As of January 21 there were four new cases, with 11 active in the community bringing the total number of cases to 137 with 125 resolved and one death.
SNEC defined healthcare workers as, “any regulated health professionals and any staff member, contract worker, or other essential caregiver currently working in a health care organization. A professionals (sic) providing a healthcare service or direct patient service in a congregate or community setting outside of a health care organization (e.g., medical first responder in the community).”
Long-term care providers and support staff are recognized in vaccinate group 1. Last week all workers who wished to receive vaccinations at the Iroquois Lodge Nursing Home got the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine and residents were given their first dose of the Moderna vaccine. Staff and residents at Jay Silverheels are slated to receive doses in the next shipment, but there no word on when that will be.
The next group prioritized after long-term care workers and residents are those in vaccinate group 2 and are classified as healthcare workers who will work to vaccine others in the community at COVID-19 vaccination clinics and include vaccinators, administration staff and Public Health staff. There is no date for when those may open to the community.
Vaccinate group 3 tier 1 consists of emergency services personal, including paramedics, fire fighters and police. Pharmacists, COVID-19 Assessment Centre staff, birthing centre staff, personal support workers and Ogwadeni:deo staff entering homes, congregate care settings and information technology staff round out group 3 tier one because those people, “provide direct and frequent or sustained care to a high risk population, and is critically essential to health system capacity.”
Group 3 tier 2 includes mental health and addictions workers, Diabetes Wellness Program staff, foot clinic staff, medical transportation and dental services staff because they provide “community care with a lower risk of exposure and is serving special populations.”
Within each of those groups people who are over aged 60, are higher risk to have serious complications from COVID-19, have a chronic condition that the virus has shown to effect, like a heart condition or diabetes, will receive the vaccination first, within their own group.
Those in lower priority groups will not be vaccinated in phase one of the SNEC vaccine roll out.
Six Nations Council communications has not responded to questions asking when the general public at Six Nations will be able to receive vaccinated.