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A letter from your medical staff president

07 May 2021

Encouraging all to get the COVID-19 vaccine

By: Leon Burrows, MD Medical Staff President

Dear Colleagues,

This has been a most challenging year and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the tremendous work you have done caring for patients in our community. Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, many worked around the clock developing vaccines to help stop the spread of the virus. As you know through national and local efforts we currently have safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines available in our community for those age 16 and older. Over 220,000 vaccines have been administered at Salem Health’s multiple vaccination sites. However, there is now a trend of decreasing vaccination numbers with many appointments for vaccinations going unfilled.

These vaccines are our best defense against this virus, and the key to a return to normal life. However, in the past several weeks we have seen a surge of coronavirus cases in Oregon, particularly locally in Marion and Polk Counties. This recent surge in cases is discouraging, but we must continue to move forward and work to protect our community. I know that many of you have already been vaccinated and for this I am grateful. Nonetheless, more members of our community need to be vaccinated to help slow the spread of the virus and return to some normalcy in our lives.

As medical practitioners our essential role in protecting the health and wellbeing of our community goes beyond the care we provide. As a valued and trusted voice, our example is perhaps our strongest health resource. My hope is simple: If you have not already been vaccinated, I urge you to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Furthermore, I implore you to share your experience with others and encourage all eligible members of our community to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

I am confident as we continue to provide excellent care to patients and through our example as medical practitioners we will be able to help our community heal and return to normalcy. I appreciate your commitment and dedication and I am grateful for your continued support.

Leon Burrows, MD Medical Staff President