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Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic

USFFC Fleet Vaccination Cell: ‘Vaccines Readily Available, Still Extremely Important’

by Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Brooke Macchietto
20 May 2021
Capt. Daniel Prochazka, executive officer of USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), receives a COVID-19 vaccination.
PORTSMOUTH, Va. (Jan. 5, 2021) Capt. Daniel Prochazka, from Woodbridge, Virginia, executive officer of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), receives a COVID-19 vaccination at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth. Harry S. Truman is currently in Norfolk Naval Shipyard for its extended carrier incremental availability period. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Tyler Bergstrom)
Capt. Daniel Prochazka, executive officer of USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), receives a COVID-19 vaccination.
210105-N-DH793-1002
PORTSMOUTH, Va. (Jan. 5, 2021) Capt. Daniel Prochazka, from Woodbridge, Virginia, executive officer of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), receives a COVID-19 vaccination at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth. Harry S. Truman is currently in Norfolk Naval Shipyard for its extended carrier incremental availability period. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Tyler Bergstrom)
Photo By: Seaman Gabriela Chambers
VIRIN: 210105-N-DH793-1002
U.S. Fleet Forces Command’s Fleet Vaccination Cell (FVC) announced this week that the current availability of vaccines at military treatment facilities (MTF) is in the thousands, and they are still urging unvaccinated Sailors to take advantage of increased availability.
 
Rear Adm. Doug Beal, USFFC, vice commander and overall FVC lead, stressed that the goal of vaccinating the fleet has not been fully achieved.
 
“It's safe and effective. Get vaccinated for your own sake and for the sake of your shipmates,” said Beal. “We've proven it's a good thing. There’s more than enough for every single Sailor who wants one.”
 
The primary method for all personnel to get a COVID vaccine is through their nearest MTF, and all MTFs are accepting appointments via their DHA Appointment Portal (DAP) Tool located at:
https://informatics-stage.health.mil/covax/.
 
“Under the most recent guidance, there are significant advantages if you’re immunized,” added Beal.  “Fully vaccinated Sailors incur no restriction of movement-sequester before getting underway, have no need to wear masks in the workspaces, and every immunized Sailor is at ‘personal Health Protection Condition (HPCON) Bravo regardless of what their base’s HPCON is.  Most importantly, though, an immunized force vastly improves our Navy’s mission assurance.”
 
USFFC originally established the FVC Jan. 11, 2021, to act as a conduit between vaccine supply and fleet demand to more than 30 subordinate commands across 32 military medical treatment facilities (MTFs), encompassing nearly 1.2 million people.
 
Since December 2020, the MTFs have administered more than 325,000 doses to fleet and shore Sailors and families across the country. During this timeframe, the FVC worked closely with the Department of the Navy to request vaccine doses for the Navy’s highest priority units, and conducted 32 Shot Exercises (SHOTEXs), or mass vaccination sites, to ensure it was convenient for fleet Sailors and Navy civilians to receive the shot.
 
“Our initial goal was to get vaccine doses to Sailors in priority order,” said Beal. “Right now, the supply of vaccines outweighs the demand, and we no longer need to prioritize. There’s enough for every Sailor who wants one.”
 
The crew from USS Harry S. Truman were able to participate in a recent SHOTEX, and the event was well received by the carrier’s leadership.
 
"We are grateful for the opportunity to provide these vaccines to our Sailors onboard. It allows us a direct avenue to help defeat this pandemic and strengthen the USS Harry S. Truman team," said Capt. Kavon "Hak" Hakimzadeh, commanding officer, USS Harry S. Truman. 
 
Personnel are highly encouraged to get the vaccine to protect their health, their families, their community, and lower the public health risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. The vaccine helps move the Navy one step closer to unencumbered operations at sea, in port, and on liberty.
 
The Department of Defense released a memo last week stating that fully vaccinated personnel, those who are two weeks past receiving their final dose, are no longer required to wear masks on DoD installations. The memo stated that “personnel who are not fully vaccinated should continue to follow applicable DoD mask guidance, including continuing to wear masks indoors.”
 
Information regarding vaccine safety and efficacy can be found at the Centers for Disease Control information at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/index.html/.
 
 
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