(STILLWATER, OK) – The City of Stillwater Mayor and Council declared Monday, September 27 – Friday, October 1, 2021 as Healthcare Professional Appreciation Week in Stillwater. Citizens, businesses, and organizations are encouraged to participate in the week’s activities and support our healthcare professionals who “continuously serve on the frontline to battle COVID-19 in addition to countless hours addressing other health emergencies and concerns,” as stated in the proclamation.


“Some healthcare professionals have left the profession and some are reconsidering their frontline careers due to increased pressures from the COVID-19 crisis,” included Shyla Eggers, Stillwater Medical Center. “We are critically short-staffed and our team members are exhausted.”


Since July 1, 2021, 98% of people admitted to Stillwater Medical Center (SMC) with COVID-19 are unvaccinated, and 100% of deaths due to COVID-19 were unvaccinated.


A COVID-19 vaccination incentive contest has been developed with collaborative efforts from the City of Stillwater (COS), Stillwater Medical Center (SMC), Stillwater Chamber of Commerce, and Visit Stillwater. The goal is to increase vaccinated citizens throughout the community to decrease the spread of the virus and severity of the illness if contracted. 


Mayor Joyce added, “Doctors, nurses, and the staff at Stillwater Medical Center are worn out, they’re tired. They would like our help in trying to figure out how to get the numbers down at the hospital; the vaccine incentive might help. This may make a difference for some who have not gotten the vaccine yet...” 


The contest is Tuesday, August 17 to Thursday, September 30. There will be a live drawing on Friday, October 1, 2021 for $100,000 in cash prizes and Oklahoma State University Football tickets. Stillwater residents must provide proof of residency and proof of started or completed COVID-19 vaccination to enter. Citizens can enter the contest by bringing their two proofs to either the Stillwater Chamber of Commerce or Visit Stillwater. 


“Health facilities have been under siege for the past year and a half. Local vaccination rates remain below 50%; if incentives help increase the vaccination rate even 10%, it is worth it,” City Manager Norman McNickle said.


There are many events planned for Healthcare Professional Appreciation Week in addition to increasing COVID-19 vaccination(s).


For detailed information about the COVID-19 incentive contest, visit: http://stillwater.org/page/breaking-news/-sleeves-up-stillwater.