AB Begins Administering COVID-19 Vaccine to Staff

Alderson Broaddus University began inoculating faculty and staff members against COVID-19 during the last week of December, with an initial group of 30 employees.

“As we begin the vaccination process,” said Bruce Blankenship, COVID-19 response manager, “I am thankful to our Alderson Broaddus nursing faculty, the Barbour County Health Department and the Barbour County Community Health Association who have been working tirelessly to care for our community.”

Alderson Broaddus received 30 doses of the mRNA-1273 vaccine, more commonly known as the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. Alderson Broaddus employees are expected to be vaccinated each week, depending on supply. This is the first in a series of vaccine distribution anticipated in the coming months.

Dr. Kim White, AB’s chair of the School of Nursing and associate professor of nursing, was the first to be vaccinated. She thought about her dual role as a patient receiving the vaccine and as a nurse administering the vaccine. “As a registered nurse, I have seen the results of COVID-19 on patients and families first-hand,” said White. “I am honored to be part of AB’s initiative to provide vaccines to faculty, staff, and students to help stop the spread of the virus.”

Based on state guidelines developed by the West Virginia Joint Interagency Task Force and in collaboration with the Higher Education Policy Commission, higher education employees over the age of 65 are to receive priority, followed by those aged 50 and older and those in close contact with the public. In compliance with the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization, Alderson Broaddus will be administering the vaccine as tested in the clinical trial, which requires two doses.

White, alongside university officials, is urging the campus community to continue taking precautions. “It is particularly important to wear a mask, maintain social distancing, wash hands thoroughly and frequently, and, if possible, get vaccinated in order to keep our communities safe and healthy.”

About Alderson Broaddus University

Alderson Broaddus University is an independent institution of higher learning, committed to serving the region as an academic, cultural, and religious resource, with programs based on a liberal arts foundation.

The mission of AB is to provide students with the highest quality education, striving to prepare students to succeed in their chosen disciplines and to fulfill their roles in a diverse society as well-rounded and responsible citizens.

Since its founding in 1871, AB has been a leader and innovator in higher education, with accolades in the health and natural sciences. Alderson Broaddus University stands out as one of the most innovative health education providers in Appalachia, pioneering the nation’s first baccalaureate physician assistant program of its kind in 1968, a post-baccalaureate physician assistant master’s degree program in 1993, and West Virginia’s first baccalaureate nursing program in 1945.

AB is located on a historic hilltop in Barbour County in Philippi, West Virginia. The University is rooted in historic and continuing relationships with the American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A. and the West Virginia Baptist Convention.

For more information about AB, visit www.ab.edu.


Photo Caption: Dr. Joan Propst administers the first Moderna vaccine to Dr. Kim White at the AB Wellness Center.

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