Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Are you next? Local health officials explain current overlap in vaccine distribution

WACO, TX – The question many Central Texans are asking is: When can I get the vaccine?

The questions began after the Texas Department of State Health Services made a plea to ensure that no vaccines go to waste.

In a letter from Texas Health Commissioner Dr. John Hellerstedt, he urged vaccine providers to use the vaccines on people in group 1B if they are available.

“We urge you to pivot quickly and begin providing vaccine to as many readily available and willing phase 1B persons as possible,” says Hellerstedt.

“There is no need to ensure all of your 1A group has been vaccinated before starting 1B vaccinations,” he said.

However, the McLennan County Public Health District says providers in the county are still working to complete vaccinations for people who want the vaccine in group 1A.

“There is a little bit of overlap but we are still trying to work on 1A,” says Stephanie Alvey with the Health District.

“Right now, in phase 1A there is still plenty of hospital workers who need it and want it in the county,” says Alvey.

And while the state has called for vaccine providers to move into 1B if possible, McLennan county officials are asking the public to sit back and wait as they take care of 1A first.

“Just be patient,” says Alvey.

“I know that’s hard to do right now but it will be available in the weeks to come for everyone in 1B,” she says.

Alvey says that the McLennan County Public Health District are expecting to finish administering their vaccines they received this week.

Both major hospitals in McLennan county, Baylor Scott and White Hillcrest and Ascension Providence, say they haven’t moved to phase 1B vaccinations yet.

Right now, both hospitals say they are still working to vaccinate everyone in 1A first, and will move to 1B in the future.

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