Samaritan’s Chief Medical Officer discusses COVID-19 vaccine, potential surge in North Country

ABC50 NOW

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — Samaritan Medical Center’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Mario Victoria answered questions regarding COVID-19 in the North Country and how Samaritan is preparing for a vaccine.

To begin the interview, Dr. Mario Victoria discussed the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine. Stating that there are currently many unknowns, such as when the North Country could see the vaccine.

However Samaritan is preparing for the vaccine by understanding who will be eligible to receive the vaccine first, storage methods and multiple dose vaccines.

Additionally during his interview, Dr. Victoria discussed how Samaritan is preparing for a potential surge, testing capabilities and personal protective equipment for staff.

Dr. Victoria emphasized his greatest concern regarding COVID-19 in the North Country.

Dr. Victoria shared, “I don’t think everyone is concerned enough about COVID. I think some people have gotten used to the idea that COVID is here, and it’s true that it is part of our reality now, but it is a deadly disease.”

When asked to share a message with the North Country regarding COVID-19, Dr. Victoria stated the following.

“I think the most important thing to get across now today is please, please follow social distancing guidelines. That is the only way you have to protect yourself at this point. Use your mask, try not to travel if you don’t have to, limit the amount of people you see because that is how you can limit your exposure. And exposure could happen anywhere,” he responded.

Dr. Victoria added, “there is enough in the community that you can presume that anywhere you go, you can be exposed to COVID.”

Watch Dr. Mario Victoria’s full Q&A style interview with ABC50’s Isabella Colello.

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