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February 19, 2021
Heritage Valley Continues Community
Vaccine Efforts; Second Dose Clinics Begin
Community member Antoinette Bruno received a COVID-19 vaccine on her 93rd birthday at the Heritage Valley Robinson Township vaccination clinic on February 16.
CCBC Nursing student, Judith McChesney and Heritage Valley CRNP Linda Lombard-Ash team up to escort and vaccinate individuals at the CCBC Dome.
Community member Gurdev Biring received his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at the Robinson Township vaccination clinic, next to Staples.
After the COVID-19 Vaccine: What You Need to Know

I received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Do I need to come back for the second dose?
Yes! The widely-utilized COVID-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer and Moderna require two doses scheduled 21 or 28 days apart, respectively. It is very important that you receive both doses of the vaccine to achieve the highest level of immunity. Those who have received their first dose at a Heritage Valley vaccination clinic already have a second dose appointment scheduled. Those "second dose" clinics begin February 25th.

I received the Moderna vaccine for my first dose. Is there a second dose available for me?
At this time, Heritage Valley Health System recommends that you plan to attend your upcoming second dose Moderna vaccine appointment as scheduled.  While we have received and inventoried a significant portion of the allotted Moderna second doses, we continue to work with the PA Department of Health to secure the remainder of our order.

Are there side effects to the COVID-19 vaccine?
Some individuals experience mild to moderate reactions after the COVID-19 vaccination. These side effects occur within 3 days of vaccination and will typically last 1-3 days. Common side effects include arm pain, fatigue, headache, joint and muscle aches, chills, fever, and nausea. Severe reactions have been rare. If you get a COVID-19 vaccine and you think you might be having a severe allergic reaction after leaving the vaccination site, seek immediate medical care by calling 911.

Is it okay to take medication to alleviate the vaccine side effects?
Medications such as acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), Ibuprofen (Advil) and Naproxen (Aleve), may be taken after the vaccine if you experience some of the side effects listed above. However, these medications are NOT recommended before the vaccination to prevent symptoms.

How do I know if my symptoms are side effects or if I have COVID-19?
Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 are not the same as signs and symptoms related to the vaccine side effects. COVID-19 symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat, and loss of taste and/or smell. These symptoms should not be attributed to the COVID vaccine and COVID testing may be advised. Please discuss these symptoms with a medical provider.
Heritage Valley Health System Updates Visitation Hours
In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Heritage Valley continues to reassess and adjust the patient-family visitation policy for our three hospitals -- Heritage Valley Beaver, Heritage Valley Kennedy, and Heritage Valley Sewickley. Safety remains a priority as we strive to ensure protection for everyone.

Effective Monday, February 22, visiting hours and the rules regarding who may visit will be expanded. Most notably, visitation hours on the inpatient units will be expanded to 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., daily. Other visitation changes are outlined on the Heritage Valley website; click here for details. To further protect our family visitors, our waiting rooms will remain closed.  
Heritage Valley COVID-19 Testing
Patients are able to obtain COVID-19 testing at one of the seven ConvenientCare locations after completing a telehealth/telephone visit with a provider or by calling the Heritage Valley COVID Call Center at 724-773-4285. Once a telehealth visit is completed and the test ordered, patients will be directed to a ConvenientCare location for testing. Patients will be able to drive up to any of our seven ConvenientCare locations (Aliquippa, Center Twp., Chippewa, Edgeworth, Ellwood City, Robinson Twp., Calcutta, Ohio) -- and remain in their car while clinical staff come to the car and assist in the collection of the COVID-19 sample. 

Heritage Valley Health System continues to offer scheduled drive-thru COVID-19 and Flu testing in Beaver on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Patients must be at least 2 years old to be tested. After having samples taken, individuals are strongly encouraged to self-quarantine at home until the test results are received. To learn more about COVID-19 and Flu testing, click here
Support Heritage Valley through the COVID-19 Response Fund
The COVID-19 Response Fund is used for patient care, critically important medications and equipment, and expenses related to vaccine distribution for the community. For more information or to donate, click here.