January 30, 2003
The Hawaii Department of Health together with the Healthcare
Association of Hawaii has confirmed participation in smallpox response
team vaccination plans with over 90% of hospitals statewide. This high
rate of participation places Hawaii above the national average.
Hawaii hospitals and the Department of Health are preparing to
offer smallpox vaccinations to selected members of their staff.
Volunteers are being recruited and pre-screened for a vaccination
process that is expected to begin in late February or March.
Hospital staff and public workers that receive the vaccination will
be identified as members of their on-site Healthcare Smallpox
Response Team. These team members will receive specialized
training in the identification and management of smallpox outbreaks in
the months to come.
Four hospitals are still considering their participation
decision. They include: Castle Medical Center, Hawaii State
Hospital, North Hawaii Community Hospital and Shriner's Hospital for
Children. All other Hawaii hospitals have elected to offer the
vaccination to their staff. This includes Tripler Army Medical
Center and various ancillary organizations.