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Kentucky Nurses Association hearing from retired nurses willing to step up to help in vaccine rollout

Published: Jan. 19, 2021 at 9:43 PM EST
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - There are reports nationwide of nurses coming out of retirement to help administer the COVID-19 vaccine, and that same trend is starting here in Kentucky.

“They’ve been calling in and emailing in saying, you know, ‘put me in coach, where do you need me’,” CEO of Kentucky Nurses Association Delanor Manson said.

The Kentucky Nurses Association is a statewide network for nurses both current and former.

Right now, many retired nurses are using that network to find out how they can help in the state’s vaccine rollout. Because, as the pace for distribution picks up, so does the need for those able to vaccinate people.

“Nurses are in the profession and have been in the profession because they care,” Manson said. “When they see the need and they know they can do something to help, it makes me feel good.”

Already at Baptist Health Corbin, 11 nurses are coming out of retirement to work at the COVID vaccination center. That’s why Manson said she doesn’t expect to see a shortage of nurses willing to help.

But, she and Gov. Andy Beshear are concerned about a shortage of the vaccine itself, especially when the state’s regional vaccine centers open in February.

“We are vaccinating at a faster pace than we actually get the vaccine, that’s exciting,” Beshear said. “But, it highlights what the very real problem that is going to drive this country for the coming months is and it’s only one major problem and that’s supply.”

Gov. Beshear said Tuesday he formally requested through Operation Warp Speed that Kentucky receive double the number of doses of the vaccine moving forward. He said the state is also looking into other avenues to increase the state’s supply.

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