SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- The COVID-19 vaccination rollout throughout the Bay State has many wondering when it will be their turn.
While healthcare workers are currently cleared for their doses, a western Mass. dentist is frustrated she and her staff have been turned away.
“They’re like, 'Oh no, dental is not medical and dental is not first responders, and dental isn’t healthcare. You need to leave. We cannot give you your vaccine,'" explained Triangle Family Dental's Dr. Marjan Khodadoust.
Dr. Khodadoust, better known by her patients as "Doctor K," and who owns Triangle Family Dental in Amherst, spoke to Western Mass News after being told on Thursday she's not eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccine yet.
She said other dentists in western Mass. have already received a COVID-19 vaccine.
“We found out that some dentist and dental offices in Northampton were able to receive vaccines, and we’re like, 'Well, this is purely political,'" she explained. "If you have a vaccine, you have a designated time, and have your staff wanting to receive it, shouldn’t they get it?”
Western Mass News reached out to the state's Department of
Public Health about this matter, who released a statement, saying:
"Healthcare workers doing non-COVID-facing care are currently scheduled to be eligible for vaccination in the next couple of weeks."
Dentists and dental hygienists fall under this category. For Dr. Khodadoust, she wants to be able to protect herself, staff, and other patients.
“We risk our lives taking care of people every day," she said. "With every patient that walks in through that front door because you don’t know.”
Now Dr. Khodadoust said she considers her and her staff first responders and believes she should be able to get vaccinated as soon as possible.