Several Health Districts Moving to General Population Vaccinations Monday – WVTF

Several health districts across the state will expand COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to the general public Monday.

The Roanoke City-Alleghany, Southside and Pittsylvania/Danville Health Districts all plan to move into Phase 2.

That’s ahead of the statewide date of April 18th announced by Governor Ralph Northam earlier this week.

Those in higher-risk groups will continue to be prioritized. And officials say anyone wanting to get a shot will need to go through the state’s pre-registration system.

You can pre-register here.

Here’s the full press release from RCAHD:

(ROANOKE, VA) — Based on the current demand and increasing supply of COVID-19 vaccine, the Roanoke City & Alleghany Health Districts will begin to invite pre-registered RCAHD citizens in Phase 2 (General Population) to make vaccination appointments next week, during the week of April 5. 

Before we open to the RCAHD General Population residents registered in Phase 2, all RCAHD residents in Phase 1a, 1b, or 1c are encouraged to use the clinic links that have been sent to them to register for an appointment. Any RCAHD Phase 1a, 1b, or 1c eligible resident who has had difficulty scheduling a 1st dose vaccine appointment can email RCHAD at RCAHDCovidResponse@vdh.virginia.gov or call us on a dedicated 1st dose appointment hotline M-F, 9am-4pm at 540-613-6597.

After we have assured that we have prioritized appointments to RCAHD Phase 1a, 1b, and 1c residents, we will send invitations on April 5 to RCAHD residents pre-registered in Phase 2 (General Population) on vaccinate.virginia.gov. We strongly encourage anyone older than 16 years of age who wants to get vaccinated to pre-register.

RCAHD will continue to prioritize vaccination for anyone in Phase 1a, 1b and 1c who registers to receive it. Although eligibility guidelines are about to be expanded to the General Population, all citizens must continue to pre-register for an appointment. Walk-ins will not be honored at clinics.

Phase 1a of vaccination includes health care personnel and those in long-term care facilities. Phase 1b includes those 65 and older, frontline essential workers and people age 16-64 with an underlying medical condition that puts them at increased risk of severe illness. Phase 1c includes other essential workers. Phase 2 includes the General Population ages 16 and older. All phases are identified in detail at www.vdh.virginia.gov/covid-19-vaccine/.

“To date, more than 138,000 first and second doses of vaccine have been administered in the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health Districts,” said Cynthia Morrow, RCAHD health director. “Vaccine supplies have increased significantly. We expect to distribute at least 9,000 first and second doses next week.”

When you receive your appointment for a vaccine, please follow these guidelines at the vaccination site:

  • Please plan to arrive no earlier than 10 minutes prior to your appointment time. Too many people arriving too early causes backups.
  • Appointments are required at all locations for COVID-19 vaccination in our area. Walk-ins will not be accepted. Please pre-register to be contacted for an appointment.    
  • Remember to continue masking and social distancing outside your household and wash your hands.

All people interested in receiving vaccine in Virginia are encouraged to pre-register at vaccinate.virginia.gov or by calling 1-877-VAX-IN-VA. All citizens are strongly urged to pre-register even if they are not currently eligible to receive vaccine now. With the expansion of doses coming in to the area, we may more quickly have supplies available to expand to additional populations. After pre-registering through the state site, individuals will be contacted when it is their turn to receive vaccine. English- and Spanish-speaking operators are available. Translation services also are available, in more than 100 languages. For TTY, dial 7-1-1.  

And here’s the full press release from the Pittsylvania/Danville and Southside Health Districts:

(DANVILLE, Va.) – The Virginia Department of Health’s Pittsylvania/Danville Health District (PDHD) and Southside Health District (SSHD) will expand vaccination efforts to Phase 2. All individuals in the PDHD and SSHD age 16 and older will be eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine starting on Monday, April 5.

“We are pleased to begin offering appointments to all members of general public in Pittsylvania/Danville Health District and Southside Health District that have pre-registered,” said Dr. Scott Spillmann, director of the PDHD and SSHD. “However, those with the highest risk will continue to receive priority in the scheduling process.”

To date, nearly 30,000 people in the PDHD and more than 23,000 people in SSHD have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.  In PDHD, more than 14,500 are fully vaccinated and, in SSHD, nearly 12,500 are fully vaccinated.

Everyone interested in receiving a vaccination should pre-register, as completely as possible, to include appropriate essential worker category, at vaccinate.virginia.gov or by calling 1-877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682).

When you receive your appointment for a vaccine, please follow these guidelines at the vaccination site:

·       Appointments are required at all locations for COVID-19 vaccination in our area. Walk-ins will not be accepted. Please pre-register to be contacted for an appointment.

·       Please plan to arrive no earlier than 10 minutes prior to your appointment time. Too many people arriving too early causes backups.

·       Please wear “vaccine ready” clothing to the extent feasible (with easy access to your upper arm).

In the meantime, it is important to remain vigilant in COVID-19 prevention. Continue to protect yourself and others: cover your mouth and nose with a mask, wash your hands often, stay at least six feet away from others and avoid gatherings with anyone who is not a member of your household.

You can learn more about the vaccine, its safety and answers to frequently asked questions at VDH’s website and CDC’s website.

What Impacts Will Johnson&Johnson Vaccine Mix-up in Baltimore Have in Virginia?

It’s not yet clear what impacts the loss of 15 million Johnson&Johnson COVID-19 shots at a Baltimore facility this week will have in Virginia.

Dr. Danny Avula is spearheading the state’s vaccination efforts. He says one thing is currently clear:

“It does appear that our doses that are coming next week will still be coming, which is good news because that’s over 200,000 doses that we were expected and that we have ordered and that will be coming in next week,” he says.

However, he isn’t sure how many J&J shots will be coming into the Commonwealth after that.

The company has said it still plans to meet its targets for the month. And Avula also says Virginia remains on track to expand vaccine eligibility to the general public statewide by April 18th.

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