Athens Limestone Hospital employees receive coronavirus vaccinations

In Limestone County, health care workers rolled up their sleeves.

Posted: Dec 15, 2020 6:01 PM
Updated: Dec 15, 2020 7:28 PM

Tuesday was the day thousands of people have been anticipating since the pandemic began.

Across the country, a mass vaccination effort is underway. North Alabama was no exception. In Limestone County, health care workers rolled up their sleeves.

Since March, Dr. Hanserd has been waiting for this moment.

"There's a lot of sense of relief," Hanserd said.

He received the first dose of Pfizer's vaccine Tuesday at Athens Limestone Hospital. Nearly 2,000 of the doses were shipped to the hospital this week.

"I know we have several hard months ahead of here at the hospital to take care of people with COVID, but I will say that after I got the vaccine, I felt very relieved," Hanserd said.

Those directly treating coronavirus patients will receive the vaccine first. Hanserd has been in charge of the coronavirus response team. He said he is hopeful this will help relieve the staffing issues they have been experiencing.

"We'll end up working for just several, several weeks on end, and with as many patients as we're seeing, that's just not something that is good for anybody," Hanserd said.

Athens Limestone Hospital is one of the first hospitals to receive a shipment of vaccines. That is because it has freezer capability.

The Chief Nursing Officer and Interim Hospital President Traci Collins said more than 50% of their employees said they would get vaccinated.

"Seeing that they're willing to get it and be the first one in line, it gives me comfort and it lets me know, hey, these guys are super smart, they study science, they study research and if they think it's safe for them, they are not going to do anything to jeopardize themselves that would be detrimental to them, so I honestly trust them with my life," Collins said.

For Hanserd, he said while this has been an expedited process, he trusts the science.

"Once it gets FDA approval, having it in hospitals in two days, and then, having it in people's arms 24 hours after that, that's quite the process," Hanserd said. "I can't take away from any of that. I mean, there are so many people that are working on this that aren't me, that aren't frontline health care workers, and we're thankful for all those people."

Some of the vaccine trials were done across from the hospital. Dr. Hanserd called those who participated, the real heroes.

In the next few days, Athens Limestone Hospital will set up a mobile unit to administer the vaccines to Decatur-Morgan and Helen Keller employees.

All of these hospitals are part of the Huntsville Hospital System.

Huntsville/Redstone
Cloudy
46° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 40°
Muscle Shoals
Cloudy
47° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 43°
Huntsville/Madison
Cloudy
44° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 41°
Decatur
Cloudy
45° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 39°
Fort Payne
Cloudy
47° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 40°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 498076

Reported Deaths: 10094
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson716711387
Mobile36294737
Madison32616468
Tuscaloosa24340421
Montgomery22739519
Shelby22174218
Baldwin19873289
Lee15039157
Calhoun13832293
Morgan13753254
Etowah13390325
Marshall11448211
Houston10124264
Elmore9483190
Limestone9420138
St. Clair9022227
Cullman8984182
Lauderdale8612214
DeKalb8489175
Talladega7606165
Walker6585259
Jackson6545104
Autauga632492
Blount6236127
Colbert6001121
Coffee5264103
Dale4671107
Russell406933
Franklin399878
Covington3993106
Chilton3898103
Escambia379173
Tallapoosa3622143
Clarke344053
Chambers3431111
Dallas3422142
Pike293373
Marion288695
Lawrence284985
Winston258368
Bibb246160
Geneva240370
Marengo238857
Pickens225457
Barbour213651
Hale212269
Fayette202057
Butler201466
Henry183541
Cherokee178039
Monroe166739
Randolph164840
Washington156836
Macon147745
Crenshaw146255
Clay145954
Cleburne139841
Lamar133733
Lowndes132751
Wilcox122925
Bullock117336
Conecuh107024
Perry106127
Sumter99732
Coosa90224
Greene88532
Choctaw55323
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 779449

Reported Deaths: 11501
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby876181509
Davidson81809871
Knox46250587
Hamilton40539463
Rutherford38563386
Williamson25382204
Sumner21448318
Montgomery17484213
Out of TN1706694
Wilson16510211
Unassigned15772127
Sullivan14431274
Blount14141183
Bradley12996141
Washington12818234
Maury12246163
Sevier12109164
Putnam10635170
Madison10123230
Robertson8997121
Hamblen8063165
Anderson8044158
Greene7309145
Tipton6962103
Coffee6418115
Dickson6256106
Gibson6196141
Cumberland6127122
Carter5990155
McMinn594592
Roane592696
Bedford5816120
Loudon571966
Jefferson5688119
Lawrence557483
Monroe536590
Warren532576
Hawkins527195
Dyer5242101
Franklin475785
Fayette468372
Obion436995
Lincoln415662
Rhea415273
Cocke401295
Cheatham394544
Marshall391956
Campbell381859
Weakley379359
Giles375297
Henderson362273
Carroll349181
White339366
Hardeman338864
Macon337273
Hardin331563
Lauderdale309642
Henry301275
Marion294744
Scott288144
Wayne287630
Overton285557
Claiborne283069
McNairy268353
Hickman266541
DeKalb266151
Haywood264960
Smith256936
Grainger244246
Trousdale239822
Morgan230338
Fentress229544
Johnson217138
Chester202348
Bledsoe201010
Crockett197547
Unicoi181447
Polk177722
Cannon176730
Union173033
Grundy169730
Lake167926
Sequatchie157327
Humphreys154921
Decatur153837
Benton151039
Lewis147425
Meigs126722
Jackson125634
Stewart124025
Clay107130
Houston103632
Perry103527
Moore94516
Van Buren79720
Pickett74623
Hancock49712

Community Events