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GRANGEVILLE — “Are you concerned [regarding the vaccinated numbers] for Syringa’s leadership?” Syringa Hospital trustee Jim May asked CEO Abner King at the Feb. 22 board meeting. May was referring to King’s report that 47 percent of the Syringa staff had been vaccinated against COVID-19.

King said he understands the hesitation in the midst of a variety of uncertainties, information overload and daily changes in news of research.

“I certainly wish the numbers were better, but I respect the fact people have questions,” and do not know if they feel comfortable receiving the vaccine, King answered.

Chair Leta Strauss said she felt comforted when she heard on television about the research process.

“SARS is something that has had ongoing research – it’s not just since the pandemic that scientists have been working on a vaccine,” she said.

Director of clinic operations Michelle Schaeffer said the vaccine administration has been going well.

“We have coordinated with Riggins to offer a clinic there this month,” she said.

Discussion ensued about offering this service in other areas and Schaeffer explained the complications, saying Riggins was very proactive in matching all the requirements needed for the clinic to occur.

“We don’t have the technology to offer the vaccine like an ice-cream truck running up and down the highway – though I wish we did,” joked King.

As of Feb. 10, 814 people had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at Syringa. Another 400 doses were expected to arrive late last month.

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