Brookdale Senior Living Inc. (NYSE: BKD) is celebrating the start of its COVID-19 vaccination program for residents and community employees across the country. Last week Brookdale held its first community vaccine clinics and more of the company’s 726 communities are being scheduled, as the nation moves forward with this important step in combatting COVID-19.
“After so many months of special protocols and heightened precautions during the pandemic, there is a sense that hope is here!” said Lucinda “Cindy” Baier, Brookdale’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are thrilled that Brookdale’s COVID-19 vaccination program is off to an early start and pleased about the level of enthusiasm within the Brookdale communities that hosted clinics.”
At Brookdale Charleston Gardens in Charleston, W.Va, instead of calling it a clinic, the staff held a “COVID Vaccine Party” and those who attended enjoyed cake and candy canes as well as receiving the vaccine. The first resident to receive the vaccine there was Elsie Atkins, who will turn 103 on Christmas Day. She has been a resident since May, 2012.
At Brookdale Westlake Village in Westlake, Ohio, the local affiliates of CBS and NBC interviewed the first resident to receive the vaccine there, Frank Hoerrle, age 92. He is a veteran and retired pipefitter, and has been at the community since March of this year.
Residents at other Brookdale communities are eagerly awaiting their turn. In Ohio, Colonel Edward L. Menning, USAF, Retired – Assistant Surgeon General of Veterinary Services, said, “This may be the only time in our lives that we can each do one thing to help the world. Get vaccinated to eradicate COVID-19!”
Brookdale is working with CVS Health through the federal government’s Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program to provide vaccinations for residents and staff members and is grateful that government officials and legislators recognized the importance of including senior living residents and associates as a top priority for vaccination.