ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE,Ga. --
The 78th Medical Group at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, began delivering COVID-19 vaccinations inside the base clinic Jan. 7.
The Moderna vaccine doses were first given to Robins medical workers, emergency services and public safety workers.
“This is an important day for Team Robins and the Middle Georgia community,” said Col. Brian Moore, Robins Installation Commander. “Administering this vaccine to base members allows us to protect our workforce, especially the most vulnerable, ensuring our continued support to the Middle Georgia community and execution of our vital missions.”
Moore watched as Capt. Christina Loyke, a physician with the 78th MDG, received the first vaccination.
“I am very honored to have been asked,” said Loyke. “I have been counting down the days until we got it here on base. I feel great and optimistic this vaccine is going to help end the pandemic.”
Loyke explained that part of the motivation to get the vaccine is to help protect her patients.
“I spend the time trying to keep them healthy, so I want to keep them safe. Also, I don’t want to get COVID. I have patients who had the virus and got really sick from it. I don’t want to be sick.”
The medical group started preparing for this historic event in October with the Point of Dispensing exercise.
The purpose of a POD is for medical workers to practice the mass distribution of vaccines or other medicines.
During that exercise, flu shots were given.
“All of the staff who worked during that exercise are here, and, because of that, this process is running smoothly,” said Maj. Leighcraft Shakes, 78th MDG Diagnostic and Therapeutic Flight commander. “Vaccines will be given in two parts with the second dose delivered 28 days later.”
Robins leadership and medical officials are still encouraging people to stay vigilant.
“We will make sure we do what we can to protect our base community by getting as many Team Robins members vaccinated as possible, wearing masks, handwashing, and social distancing. We are better together,” said Moore.