ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) – The Roanoke Alleghany Health District is making progress in vaccinating those eligible in Phase 1b, and continues to encourage people to preregister for their shots.
“Our vaccine supply is increasing, and this is wonderful news for our community,” Health Director Dr. Cynthia Morrow said.
At the end of last week, the health district started vaccinating all tiers of Phase 1b, including essential workers.
“We partnered with Walmart over the end of last week, Thursday, Friday and Saturday and we were able to get some of our Phase 1b essential workers and our older population into those clinics,” Morrow said.
The message now is that anyone in Phase 1a, 1b or even 1c should preregister for the vaccine.
“This will allow us to rapidly populate our clinics when our vaccine comes into our community,” Morrow said.
This message comes as the health district prepares to receive about 8,000 doses of the newly-approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
The health district is coordinating with Carilion Clinic on administering those shots.
According to Morrow, anyone notified to participate in a vaccine clinic will be told if they will be getting a Johnson & Johnson dose before registering and will have the option to wait for another vaccine.
However, she said there’s no reason to wait.
“The Johnson and Johnson Vaccine, which just received its FDA emergency use authorization and was just approved by the advisory committee on immunization practices, is a safe and effective vaccine. The best vaccine is the one that is available to you,” Morrow said.
Morrow does not know exactly when they will be able to open vaccinations to Phase 1c, but she said it will come sooner than she originally expected.
The Health District will continue to have the different phases overlap so every dose gets used.
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