MCKEES ROCKS, Pa. (KDKA) – The search for a vaccine is being compared to the Hunger Games. Pharmacy lists are growing by the thousands, but the number of doses to give out is dwindling.
That’s why teachers at two local school districts are thankful for quick action by their administrators.READ MORE: Mon Wharf Reopening For Parking On Monday
“I feel a little bit more protected,” said Katherine O’Hara, who works at Montour School District.
O’Hara now has her first dose of the Moderna vaccine.
“Teachers here at Montour have been in school since September the 1st, so I ethically and morally felt it was very important for our folks to get vaccinated,” said Superintendent Chris Stone.
After separately calling and calling to find vaccines, Montour partnered with West Allegheny to secure doses from family-owned Primary Care Pharmacy for a clinic for teachers who fall into the 1A category or are part of the special education staff.
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“You know we work with a population of students that really benefit from being in person in school. To be able to continue to support them without fear or hesitation is a really great thing,” said Amy O’Keefe, an 8th grade Learning Support at West Allegheny School District.
It hasn’t been easy for the pharmacy to keep up with this demand.
“It’s super hard to staff to plan when you have no idea what you are getting until it’s falling in your lap, there is no heads up until the day it is coming on what you are getting,” said Jacki Bertola who’s the co-owner of Primary Care Pharmacy Services.
Bertola and her husband are being forced to cancel similar clinics to have a second dose for others.
“It’s hard to get on a list, it’s hard to get a vaccine. Our waiting list is 21,000 people long,” Bertola said.
They feel the frustrations and are trying to chip away at the community numbers with partnerships like this one.
“It really didn’t become real until we saw teachers lining up and actually getting the vaccinations in the arm, so it was really exciting,” Stone said.MORE NEWS: Baldwin High School Students Raise Thousands Of Dollars Through Polar Pop Event For Special Olympics Of Pennsylvania
On top of the school staff, a group of 65 and older community members were also vaccinated.