COVID-19 testing takes front seat ahead of COVID-19 vaccinations
January 5, 2021
High demand for COVID-19 tests, care at Texas MedClinic limits
urgent care center’s ability to offer COVID-19 vaccinations
As one of the region’s first private providers offering COVID-19 testing in March, Texas MedClinic has been performing over 1,200 tests per day across their 19 clinics, limiting the urgent care provider’s ability to offer patients the COVID-19 vaccine as it becomes available.
“With over 250,000 COVID-19 tests performed since March, our staff and facilities are at maximum capacity caring for and guiding patients who have been impacted by the virus,” said Texas MedClinic Chief Operating Officer and practicing physician Dr. David Gude. “After careful planning, we determined that we should remain a COVID-19 testing and urgent care resource, allowing our medical and pharmacy counter parts to lead the mass vaccination effort.”
According to Gude, Texas MedClinic anticipates the demand for testing will remain high through the summer of 2021 when experts expect the vaccination level in the area to be greater than 70 percent, which will achieve herd immunity.
“The vaccination is an important step in combating the COVID-19 public health crisis,” said Gude. “We will support those organizations and companies stepping forward to be the vaccination resources in our communities through patient education.”
Texas MedClinic continues to work with the public health authorities in Bexar, Comal, Travis and Williamson counties where they have clinics to support the respective county’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts and will share information with patients on where and how to be vaccinated when vaccination supplies increase.
The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) began phase 1a distribution of
COVID-19 vaccines on December 14 for health care workers, frontline workers and vulnerable populations like those in nursing homes who are at greater risk of complication and death from the virus. Distribution is currently in Phase 1b distribution and now includes all people over the age of 65 and those 16 years and older with chronic medical conditions that put them at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
Texas DSHS map shows hospitals, pharmacies and clinics that are providing COVID-19 vaccinations.
Texas MedClinic received approval by the Texas DSHS to be a COVID-19 vaccinator but will limit vaccinations to their 500 health care staff.
“Keeping our staff well assures we are able to provide the medical care our community needs,” said Gude.
Texas MedClinic has received the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, which recently obtained emergency-use-authorization through the Federal Drug Administration. It requires a series of two doses, one month apart.
“It’s an incredible feat of science to have developed a vaccine in such a short period of time,” said Gude. “As frontline healthcare workers, our staff can take a deep breath knowing that with vaccination they can protect themselves and their families from COVID-19, while continuing to serve our communities.”