Nursing and residential care facilities across the state began vaccinating residents and staff last week as the new Moderna vaccine became available and the second wave of the Pfizer vaccine was delivered. The Republican Journal contacted several facilities in Waldo County to inquire how vaccination efforts were proceeding.

At Tall Pines in Belfast, a nursing and residential care facility, Interim Administrator Leslie Currier said the Pfizer vaccines are scheduled to be administered Dec. 30. Long-term care residents will receive the vaccine, while residential care residents will be scheduled for a later date.

Harbor Hill Center, an assisted living facility in East Belfast, reported vaccinating staff and residents Dec. 22. Dr. Richard Feifer, chief medical officer at Harbor Hill, said that along with personal protective equipment and testing, vaccination is the “critical third leg of the stool.”

“This is unquestionably the biggest vaccination effort ever undertaken and will help prevent further tragedies," he said, "especially in this vulnerable population."

Feifer said his facility is working in partnership with CVS pharmacy to administer the vaccines and that 85% of residents chose to be vaccinated in round one. CVS will return three weeks later to administer the second booster shots for those who received the vaccine Dec. 22, he said, and will vaccinate anyone not included in round one. A third round is planned, three weeks after round two, to administer the final booster shots.

"Through communications, engagement and trust-building, we have a goal of 100% staff vaccination without attempting to impose a requirement," Feifer said. "We have a robust communication and education initiative underway, encouraging vaccination among staff, residents and families."

Officials at Bayview Manor, a long-term care facility in Searsport, declined to comment for this story. Attempts to reach DLTC Healthcare in Rockport, which manages Bayview Manor along with 15 other facilities statewide, were unsuccessful.