Bayhealth nurse first to get COVID-19 vaccine in Delaware

December 15, 2020

A Bayhealth nurse was the first person to get vaccinated for COVID-19 in Delaware Dec. 15.

Elisabeth Cote, a progressive care unit nurse at Bayhealth, received the vaccine at Kent General Hospital in Dover roughly 24 hours after the first shipment arrived at the facility Dec. 14. Cote is part of the Phase 1a group of frontline healthcare staff who are slated to receive the vaccine first. 

“After nine long months fighting COVID-19, this is a moment of hope for Delaware and for our country. There is a light at the end of the tunnel,” said Gov. John Carney in a press release. “Delaware’s nurses, doctors, nursing assistants, and nonmedical staff have all demonstrated courage and leadership every day of this COVID-19 crisis. Now, nurses like Elisabeth Cote are leading by example again by stepping up to get the COVID-19 vaccine. It is because of them that we will beat this pandemic and come out stronger on the other side.”

Bayhealth is the first healthcare system in Delaware to receive the vaccine. Bayhealth President and CEO Terry M. Murphy said he was proud of how Bayhealth has responded to this pandemic, and he looks forward to protecting the entire community with the help of this vaccine in the months ahead. 

“These vaccines will provide critical protection to our frontline workers whose lives are at risk every day due to COVID-19,” he said of the first round of vaccines given to healthcare workers. 

Delaware, which received 975 of its 8,775 pre-ordered doses from Pfizer, was one of the first states in the nation to receive initial doses of vaccine Dec. 14. The Delaware Division of Public Health, which is coordinating the state’s efforts to acquire and distribute the vaccine, expects to receive the remainder of the vaccine doses at its Kent County warehouse Dec. 16.

The Pfizer vaccine is required to be kept at below-freezing temperatures. After receipt, DPH will store the doses it receives in its ultra-cold storage unit and will begin scheduling delivery to the remainder of the state’s healthcare systems. Those doses will be distributed within 24 to 48 hours after the shipment is received.


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