Submitted by Clark County
Clark County Public Health continues to work with local health care facilities to vaccinate people who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The Washington State Department of Health has prioritized the groups of people to be vaccinated in Phases 1a and 1b.
Clark County and Washington state are currently in Phase 1a. Vaccination for Phase 1b populations has not yet began.
In Phase 1a, people who work in health care settings, high-risk first responders, and people who live or work in long-term care facilities are eligible to be vaccinated. Local facilities have already vaccinated thousands of health care workers and first responders, and pharmacies are vaccinating staff and residents at long-term care facilities through a partnership with the federal government.
People who are eligible to be vaccinated in Phase 1a and need help accessing COVID-19 vaccine can submit a request form on the Public Health website. Public Health is connecting eligible people to local health care facilities with COVID-19 vaccine.
Requests are currently only being considered for those who are eligible in Phase 1a. In the last week and a half, Public Health has received requests from approximately 3,000 individuals and continues to receive several hundred requests per day. Currently, the number of requests for vaccine among the 1a population exceeds the capacity of local health care facilities. Clark County will not begin vaccinating people eligible in Phase 1b until the number of requests from the Phase 1a population begins to decrease.
Public Health will begin accepting requests for Phase 1b as vaccine supply and availability of appointments allow. Public Health will make an announcement and provide an update on its COVID-19 Vaccine webpage when requests for 1b populations are being accepted.
“Public Health and our local health care partners are working to get eligible people vaccinated as quickly as possible,” said Dr. Alan Melnick, Clark County health officer and Public Health director. “We, like many in our community, are eager to see the number of people protected against COVID-19 increase.”
Currently, all COVID-19 vaccines are being administered through a limited number of local health care facilities and pharmacies. Public Health and partners in Southwest Washington are exploring opportunities for opening community vaccination sites in order to more quickly vaccinate people. These efforts are in the early planning stages. Public Health will have more information to share in the coming weeks.
The Washington State Department of Health provides weekly updates on the number of COVID-19 vaccine doses allocated and administered in the state and is expected to publish a dashboard with COVID-19 vaccine data soon.
For additional information about the state COVID-19 vaccine allocation plan, including who is eligible to be vaccinated in Phase 1b, visit the Washington State Department of Health COVID-19 Vaccine webpage.