National Guard, health unit team to inoculate

Private First Class John Engle, a medic with the Louisiana National Guard, inoculates a Minden resident against Covid.

By Bonnie Culverhouse

Louisiana National Guard soldiers teamed with Webster Parish Health Unit to offer Covid vaccinations and boosters to those who have not received one yet.

Friday morning, Guardsmen were at the local health unit between 8 a.m. and noon to give more than 25 injections, as well as several Covid tests.

“We are medics in the Army,” Staff Sgt. Jacob Jett said, explaining the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) contracts through the National Guard to bring this service to the public. “If it’s a lower-served area, we will come out and do the mini-sites like this, versus our main site in Shreveport.”

This was not Jett’s first time on a “shot mission.” He has been in the Guard for almost 19 years.

“When there are hurricanes, we will come in and do mass inoculations and basic health care support,” he said. “We will do flu shots during flu season and support the medical communities. It’s what the Guard has always done.”

Eric Bougues and Kimberly Johnson, representing Beta Land Services which partnered with LDH, were at the health unit Friday, handing out $100 gift cards to those who were receiving their first vaccination.

“We started out doing this at colleges,” Bougues said. “Back in October, they expanded it to the general public.”


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