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AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR OUR COMMUNITY

For updates on the SNI response to Covid-19, click here to visit the Seneca Nation Coronavirus Response Hub.

To receive important updates via phone & text, click here and learn about the Regroup Messaging System.

As cases of COVID-19 increase in our area, remember that you or someone you encounter may have the virus and not know it or display symptoms. There are many ways to prevent infection and stop the spread. Whether you feel healthy or not- stay home, wash your hands often, and avoid close contact with people outside of your household (stay 6 feet apart).

If you experience symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, or have any concerns about your health, call your primary care provider to be assessed. Patients of the Lionel R. John Health Center can call (716) 945-5894 and patients of the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation Health Center can call (716) 532-5582.

Presidential Update - 1/25/2021

Posted in: News & Announcements

President Pagels gives an update on a slight increase in positive cases of COVID-19, SNHS receiving another batch of vaccine doses, as well as upcoming community testing events, annual registration deadline extension, vaccine information sessions, and the virtual meeting for February’s regular Council session.

Presidential Update 1/15/21

Posted in: News & Announcements

President Pagels gives an update on the Seneca Nation Health System’s ongoing vaccination efforts, testing statistics, and upcoming community testing events. He also offers condolence on the passing of Joe Crangle, who served as legal counsel to the Nation for many years.

Presidential Update 1/11/2021

Posted in: News & Announcements

President Pagels gives the latest COVID-19 statistics and upcoming testing dates for the Seneca Nation. He also announces a weekly virtual information session about COVID response/vaccination efforts, the formation of a Climate Change Task Force, and the Nation’s new Twitter account.

SNHS COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic FAQ

Posted in: Health System

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How long does it take to go through the vaccination clinic?

30 minutes total in most cases, 15-30 minutes of supervision is needed after someone receives the vaccine when someone likely to have a reaction or side effect receives the vaccine they will likely be onsite for around 45 minutes with the increased observation time.

Does the Moderna Vaccine protect against the new COVID strain?

In a statement Moderna said it continues to test the vaccine against mutations.

"The Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine expresses the full-length Spike protein of the SARS-COV-2 virus, allowing for the generation of neutralizing antibody responses to multiple domains of the protein," the statement reads in part."The full-length Spike protein is 1,273 amino acids long, so while recent variants involve multiple mutations, for instance up to 8 amino acid changes in the spike protein of the B1.1.7 strain, these represent less than a 1% difference from the spike protein encoded by Moderna’s vaccine."

They say that they will continue to test the vaccine against variants of the virus, such as the one found in the United Kingdom.

"We continue to test the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine against new SARS-CoV-2 variants, and our expectation is that the vaccine’s effectiveness will hold against them as well," the statement reads.

What does the tentative schedule look like?

Monday 1/4 at LRJ - 40 patients

Tuesday 1/5 at CHWC - up to 50 individuals

Wednesday 1/6 at LRJ - up to 50 individuals

Thursday 1/7 at CHWC - up to 50 individuals

What is the process for the outgoing calls to schedule?

We are making phone calls to elders with 3 comorbidities of focus over the age of 74. Once a patient is called, whether they decline or are unreachable via phone, we move on down the list. We will accept these patients as the schedule allows, if they change their mind or return our call/contact us to request an appointment. At this time the priority levels are absolute, we will not be able to accommodate anyone outside of the criteria set or accept incoming requests outside of those already contacted.

Based on an initial limited supply, how was the priority list was developed?

Limited supply based on the allocation from IHS and distributed to the Nashville Area. At this point we are not able to order vaccines. Vaccine ordering system training is next week for VPOP. Priority list was developed by referencing IHS, CDC, and ACIP recommendations. Priority list detailed below.

o Seneca Nation Health System priority/frontline employees (complete)

o First responders: Seneca Fire, SNI Marshals

o SNHS high risk patients, 74 years of age and older

o SNHS patients, 74 years of age and older

o SNHS high risk patients, 64-73 years of age

o SNHS patients, 64-73 years of age

Why is the schedule so important? Why are appointments limited in groups of 10’s only? The schedule is key to the COVID-19 vaccination process. In order to have a safe, effective vaccination clinic and utilize the vaccine itself, without any waste, the scheduled must be strictly adhered to. At this time, scheduling is done by SNHS staff performing outgoing phone calls from the priority lists. The schedule then affects how many vials are thawed and prepared for the vaccination clinic. Once punctured, all doses must be used within 6 hours. Each vial contains 10 vaccine doses.

Why is it important to have patient data current (i.e. phone numbers, contact info)?

Patients must have up-to-date phone numbers on file in order to be contacted in an organized matter. Patients may miss the phone call to have their vaccination scheduled if we have incorrect phone numbers, if they do not return our phone call, or if their voicemail is not setup. Patients may update their phone number with Patient Registration.

What part of the clinic controls vaccinations per hour? 

Time consuming process of inputting data. There are up to 4 locations for documentation: EMR, VAMS, NYSIIS, and VAERS.

Why is there only Health System patients initially receiving the vaccine? 

At this time, for scheduling purposes, staff are calling patients of the Health System. In the future we may have criteria for target populations outside of the Health System patient population to call in and request being put on the schedule.

What is the location of the vaccination clinics? 

Vaccination clinic in Allegany at Lionel R John Health Center is in the Grand Room. Patients may park in the back parking lot, orange road cones will designate the entry to the vaccination area. Vaccination clinic in Cattaraugus at the Community Health and Wellness Center is in the Grand Room. Patients may park in the Optical Parking lot.

Is any information distributed while getting the shot?

Packets include vaccine information and fillable documents, packets are filled out when the patient arrives the vaccination clinic. The vaccine is not fully effective after the initial dose. Universal precautions, whether vaccinated or not, will need to be practiced: social distancing, hand washing, wearing a face covering, etc.

How quickly are we going through the age brackets (i.e. over 74) and once people decline or don’t answer do you get to the next bracket (i.e. over 70) and so on? 

This varies depending on the number of patients in the priority group. Once a patient is called, whether they decline or are unreachable via phone, we move on down the list. We will accept these patients as the schedule allows, if they change their mind or contact us to request an appointment. At this time the priority levels are absolute, we will not be able to accommodate anyone outside of the criteria set. While there are such limited quantities of vaccine, we cannot accept the incoming calls and requests for vaccinations.

Will SNHS be open additional days and hours to get vaccine out? 

Dependent on the need, interest, and doses available, considerations for additional days could be entertained.

When will the next priority get vaccinated when there is no inventory left?  

The second shipment of vaccines is expected in the near future- we are awaiting notification from the Nashville IHS area on quantity and shipment date.

What goes into planning the booster vaccine (dose 2)?

Individuals make their second appointment, for their booster vaccine/dose 2 during their observation period after receiving their 1st dose of vaccine. 

 

Presidential Update 12/21/20

Posted in: News & Announcements

President Pagels offers condolences on the passing of 3 community members over the weekend. As some were from COVID-19, he urges everyone to do their part to stop the spread during the holiday season. He notes that the Seneca Nation is awaiting word from the Indian Health Service about vaccine distribution, and reminds everyone about today’s mask and sanitizer distribution, as well as upcoming testing events and the Elder’s Holiday Drive-Thru.

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