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Team Osan gets stuck for 10,000th time

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Christopher Marasky
  • 51st Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Doing your taxes and getting shots.

These are on just about any list of things to do that people enjoy the least in life. Yet Tuesday Team Osan set a milestone by giving out the 10,000th anthrax vaccination shot since it was made mandatory again in March.

"I feel that it's a safe shot, I've never had any problems with it," said Master Sgt. Nichole M. Reynolds of the 51st Medical Operations Squadron, the recipient of the 10,000th shot. "I think it's important because we're in a high risk area. The more people immunized, the less our threat as a whole."

When asked how she felt about being number 10,000, Sergeant Reynolds seemed happy about the proposition. "I think it's great because it shows a lot of others have gotten the shot."

Since the institution of the mandatory anthrax vaccination, Osan has maintained a compliance rate of 96.5 percent and largely contributes to Pacific Air Force being no. 1 in compliance in the Air Force.

"It's been a team effort across the medical group to deliver the mass vaccinations and maintain the requirement," said Lt. Col. Tamara Averett-Brauer, 51st Medical Operations Squadron commander. "It's because of pro-active and aggressive support from the wing and leadership that we've been this successful."

It's no easy task to be ahead of the curve, given the mass numbers of vaccinations that were needed when the mandatory program was reinstated in March of this year.

"We were the first on the peninsula to implement our mass vaccination program, and we started the program and were well ahead when they turned on the marker to track progress." said Colonel Averett-Brauer.

Making such progress is always a dubious task when confronted with the stigma that the anthrax vaccination had in the past. But with more education on the shot and increased awareness, Team Osan members seem to be taking the new mandate extremely well.

"When it was in the optional phase, it was about 50 percent of the people who just came in and got the shot no problem," said Tech. Sgt. Shirley Wright, 51st Medical Operations Squadron immunization clinic NCO in charge. "Now it's a good 99 percent of the people who come in and get it, no problem. The other 1 percent were just reluctant and needed more education on the subject."