EATON — Preble County EMA Director Dave Anderson met with the Preble County Commissioners during their Wednesday, Jan. 13 meeting to discuss vaccine distribution throughout the county.
Anderson said the EMA is working very closely with Preble County Public Health on the county’s COVID-19 pandemic response.
“I’ve been assisting the health department and doing planning, setup and operations of the vaccine clinic,” he said. “We’ve had four of them so far, and they’ve been attended well. Everything has gone very, very smoothly. That just kind of shows that if you have a little bit of planning ahead of time, that things work out great.”
After further updates on the EMA’s Community Emergency Response Team and a grant that was applied for, the FY20 Emergency Performance Grant, Commissioner Craft asked that they return to discussing the COVID-19 vaccine.
“Do you need any additional help from us and additional equipment, anything that you might need to make that process a little bit better for the health department and your office?” Commissioner Craft asked.
Anderson said not at this time, but that isn’t to say they won’t need help later on.
“We’re working with very small groups, the 1A group which was the EMTs and healthcare professionals. Compared to everybody in the county getting a vaccine, that is a very small group. Everything has been working well with it and haven’t had any problems,” he said. “Now, we’re moving into a group that has got a lot more people in it, which, as the the state mandates, is going to be from 65 and up are the next group of people in the 1B category that get the vaccine.”
Commissioner Craft later asked if the health department has adequate refrigerator storage for vaccines.
According to the CDC, the Moderna vaccine can be kept between 36 and 46 degrees for up to 30 days once thawed, and according to Pfizer’s website, their vaccine should be kept between 36 and 46 degrees for no more than five days once thawed.
“Yes and no,” Anderson replied. “They don’t actually in house have that, but they have found that there is a tissue company that stores tissue that has those super cold refrigerators that our vaccine can be stored in. The other thing to do would be to get dry ice. There is a dry ice manufacturer up in Greenville. It’s called Continental Carbonic. I have been in touch with them and we can get dry ice from them if needed.”
Furthermore, Commissioner Craft asked if it would be worthwhile to look at purchasing a refrigerator unit for in-house storage.
“Those things, the way I understand them, are really expensive,” Anderson cautioned. “I mean, we’re talking tens of thousands of dollars to get it. To be honest with you, they’ve never really had any kind of a reason to get something like that until now, so this would be a one shot deal more than likely.”
In other business
The board noted receipt and considered approval by signing the following agreements:
- Data maintenance services agreement with Digital Data Technologies, Inc., for Wireless 9-1-1 ($12,000).
- Tire collection and removal agreement with Liberty Tire Recycling LLC ($31,692).
- Maintenance agreement with Sounds Communications to extend for an additional year for Wireless 9-1-1 ($7,657).
The Preble County Board of Commissioners meet every Monday and Wednesday in the Preble County Courthouse at 9 a.m. These meeting are open to the public.
Reach Braden Moles at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @BradenMoles