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Cannon medical group administers COVID-19 vaccine

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Vernon R. Walter III
  • 27th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs

The first COVID-19 vaccines were administered to frontline responders at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., January 7, 2021.

With a collaborative effort between multiple squadrons from the 27th Special Operations Medical Group, the vaccine was able to be properly stored, transported, and administered to 20 personnel today.

“Our medical group has been committed to developing and executing a COVID-19 vaccination plan in concert with Department of Defense guidance,” said Col. Robert Masaitis, 27th Special Operations Wing commander. “Their hard work and dedication to our force and mission readiness has enabled Cannon to remain vigilant and healthy despite the challenges that COVID-19 has presented.”

Cannon’s first vaccination was administered by Staff Sgt. Melissa Hager, 27 SOMDG immunizations clinic non-commissioned-officer-in-charge.

“Our team has been doing great in preparation for this,” Hager said. “We’ve been doing weekly meetings and training since October in preparation for this. It’s exciting to handle something new, that can hopefully help stop the spread of COVID-19.”

The shots were given to frontline medical members and that are embedded with other squadrons due to their small numbers, as well as first responders. This is the first step in Cannon’s phased approach towards vaccinations, which will prioritize specific individuals based on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the DOD’s guidance.

“COVID-19 has required Airmen and families to make enormous sacrifices to protect our force and mission readiness these last eight months. The vaccine’s arrival provides encouragement and optimism for all who live on and around the installation indicating an end to this pandemic is achievable. Even with the arrival of the vaccine, Cannon will continue to exercise COVID safe practices to protect our mission, families and local community. We will be vigilant in our commitment to social distancing, limited gatherings and mask wear until our local community has reached an effective immunization rate.”