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The state has announced two new partnerships aimed at vaccinating seniors.
The Delaware Division of Public Health will partner with Vault Health and community organizations to host vaccination clinics in low-income, under-served communities. The first of these kinds of events is happening at Delaware Tech in Wilmington Tuesday with invites extended through a host of organizations, including the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League, the Latin American Community Center, Reach Riverside, the Ministry of Caring, and the Delaware Legislative Black Caucus. All slots, however, are full. Anyone who shows up without an appointment will be turned away.
The state is also partnering with testing company Curative to vaccinate those 65 and older, who’ve registered and are on the state’s waiting list. Invites will go out to people on the waiting list in order of risk. The first of these events will be held this week in Dover with a goal of vaccinating 750 persons this week. Details on the locations of testing sites were not released.
“Our new vaccination partnerships with Vault and Curative will help us vaccinate even more Delawareans, including many of our most vulnerable neighbors. We’ll continue to press forward with the goal of vaccinating as many Delawareans as quickly as possible as the vaccination supply allows,” said Governor John Carney in a prepared statement.
DPH is also planning to hold another drive-thru-style mass vaccination clinic this weekend with plans to serve 2,000 seniors on the waiting list by appointment only. Details on the location of these sites have not been released.
Pharmacies in the state are also expected to get increased COVID-19 vaccine allocations from the state. Currently, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Walmart, Aspira Health, and Camden Pharmacy are providing vaccinations to seniors by appointment only. Some providers, listed here, are also providing vaccinations to seniors.
“There will be no one right way to get your COVID vaccine, and we are building new access points to serve eligible Delawareans now and in the future.”
Educators and school staff
Pre-registration begins Tuesday, January 26, 2021, for educators and staff of private and public K-12 schools. Drive-thru events and on-site vaccination events at schools will be held specifically for this population. This population can also be vaccinated through a partnership with Acme/Safeway pharmacies. For more information on that, click here.
Childcare workers, who are also a part of Phase 1b will have to wait until February to register to be vaccinated. More than 200,000 Delawareans, including 186,000 seniors are in this current phase of vaccinations.
Many first responders and healthcare workers have expressed concern over getting their second doses, with some seeing their appointments canceled, now that Delaware is focusing on first doses since vaccine allotment from the federal government became tied to speed of vaccine administration.
“Due to limited vaccine supply, the state’s efforts will focus primarily on administering first doses to eligible individuals. As supply allows, the state will prioritize second doses for 1a individuals at greatest risk of exposure to COVID-19,” the state said.
Recently, the CDC updated its guidance to say that in extreme circumstances the second round of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines could be administered up to 42 days after the first dose when the 21- to 28-day timeline is not feasible.
Anyone who is 65 and older and hasn’t yet registered with the state to get the COVID-19 vaccine, click here. Seniors without internet or computer access can call the vaccine call center at 1.833.643.1716.
California officials on Monday revealed more details about the new homegrown coronavirus strain that could be partly responsible for a sharp uptick of cases and deaths in the state.
Two research groups discovered the B1429 variant while looking for the highly-contagious B117 variant that has been linked to the United Kingdom, officials said at a press conference.
The California mutation — said to be in the same “family tree” as the UK variant — has now been reported in 456 cases across the Golden State, Governor Gavin Newsom said.
But the governor warned the real number of cases is likely far higher.
About a quarter of viral samples gathered at the end of last year in Los Angeles and Northern California by two different groups contained the new strain, according to the LA Times.
Newsom said the state is still working to see if the B1429 strain leads to worse infections.
“We’re still working on, is that a COVID variant that’s unique to California? Or is it something else? Again, we’re still working through that. We’re working through its virulence, we’re working through its transmissibility to investigate more understanding,” the Democratic governor said.
Health officials are still determining if the new variant shares is more contagious than the regular strain, like its British counterpart.
“We’re concerned that it [B1429] attaches to the human cell a little more than the natural virus the one we’ve been dealing with. That might make it more contagious, we aren’t sure yet, we’re looking at it,” said Mark Ghaly, California Health and Human Services Secretary.
Cases have surged recently, while 35 percent of California’s 37,121 total coronavirus deaths have come in the past month, according to Johns Hopkins Medical Center.
Ghaly said a combination of holiday travel and the “curveball” of the new variant may be to blame.
“Look I grew up and played sports my entire life, [it] really depended on trying to understand my opponent,” Ghaly said.
“We have an opponent we’ve never seen before. We have no game film on COVID-19, we don’t know what it’s going to do, so we need to constantly be watching the plays of the day to understand what’s going to come tomorrow.”
Despite the warnings, Newsom on Monday lifted the state’s stay-at-home order, which had been imposed last month
Officials say it’s unclear if a new vaccine is needed to fight the B1429 strain, but are urging Californians to continue to get inoculated with the current shots.
With vaccine demand far outstripping supply and many shots being used for second doses this week, Los Angeles city and county community vaccination centers are fully booked until at least the weekend.
Sites run by the county are booked through Friday, but officials hope to add appointments on Saturday and Sunday, county public health director Barbara Ferrer said in a briefing Monday afternoon.
The five city-run sites, including Dodger Stadium, are full through Saturday, and it’s unclear when more slots will open up.
“Once we know that we’ll have more doses, we’ll open up more appointments,” said Andrea Garcia, a press secretary for Mayor Eric Garcetti.
Those who register on the county’s website can get an alert when new appointments become available, Ferrer said.
The county has run out of appointment slots less than a week after expanding vaccine eligibility to all residents age 65 and older.
“The only limiting factor right now is we need more vaccine,” Ferrer said.
Vaccines are also offered at some pharmacies, hospital clinics and federally qualified health centers. You can also check for appointments at those locations through the county’s vaccine portal.
Last Thursday, Ferrer said nearly three-quarters of the vaccine doses the county is receiving this week are needed for second doses, leaving only 37,900 shots to administer as a first dose.
Ferrer noted that about 2 million people in L.A. County are currently eligible for a vaccine, including nearly 1.4 million age 65 and older, more than 600,000 health care workers and 100,000 people living in nursing homes and other congregate facilities. And they each need two doses.
The county has received a total of 853,650 doses, and its allocation hasn’t ramped up as quickly as eligibility expanded. In fact, last week around 168,500 doses arrived in the county — fewer than the 193,950 it received the week before.
But anyone who receives a first dose at one of the county’s large-capacity sites will automatically be scheduled for their second shot. The information can be found on their vaccination card, Ferrer said.
“They don’t need to do anything to get an appointment,” she said. “We will pre-register everybody who goes to our sites for their second appointment.”
Those sites are all using the Pfizer vaccine, so residents don’t have to be concerned about receiving a different shot.
“If there’s any confusion, you just can go to the site on that 21st day after you got your first vaccine,” Ferrer said. “You will be registered, and you will generally be registered at the same time you had your first appointment.”
Ferrer predicts the county is still months away from a point where most residents will be immunized.
It’s also unclear when there will be enough vaccines to offer them to groups next in line, including teachers, first responders and food service workers. On Monday, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that California will shift to age-based prioritization after those groups are inoculated.
Ferrer said she’s hopeful vaccine supply will increase quickly under the Biden administration. Also on Monday, the president indicated he’d boost his goal for coronavirus vaccinations in his first 100 days in office, suggesting that soon an average of 1.5 million Americans could be vaccinated each day.
“That will give us lots more opportunities in February and March to be able to expand the groups of people that are eligible for getting vaccinated,” Ferrer said. But currently the county’s focus remains on people 65 and over.
County Board of Supervisors Chair Hilda Solis said she’s requesting President Joe Biden’s team to prioritize L.A. County for vaccine distribution and the rollout of federal vaccination centers, as it’s one of the nation’s hardest hit areas.
The county is also working to build out a distribution network so it is “immediately ready to get those doses into the arms of eligible residents,” Ferrer said.
That includes exploring partnerships with school districts, colleges and childcare providers to help vaccinate their teachers and staff once they are eligible.
Inova Health is canceling all first-dose appointments for the COVID-19 vaccine, effective Tuesday.
The hospital system says its vaccine supply had been “severely diminished” after a switch in the state’s distribution method.
“Vaccinating everyone in the Northern Virginia community, as quickly as possible, is Inova’s top priority right now,” the hospital said in a statement. “Last week, in response to a national shortage of the COVID-19 vaccine, the Virginia Department of Health made a modification to their vaccine distribution methods and announced that going forward, vaccines will be sent directly to health districts to be allocated appropriately.
“As a result, Inova’s allocation of vaccine has been severely diminished, causing us to make the difficult decision to prioritize the available doses.”
Those who received a first dose from Inova and are scheduled for a second dose appointment will be prioritized at this time and their appointments will be honored.
“We understand and share the frustration that this news brings to our patients,” the statement said. “When we receive more supply inventory, we will first prioritize patients who had an appointment scheduled and then focus on opening further appointments up to eligible groups. If you are a patient whose appointment is cancelled, rest assured we are working diligently to identify new supply and will reach out to reschedule your appointment as soon as we are confident we have a vaccine for you.”
In the last month, Inova quickly established operations and administered more than 70,000 vaccines.
SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff updated the community about the local response to COVID-19 in their daily briefing Monday night.
Nirenberg reported 162,108 total COVID-19 cases and 1,980 total deaths in Bexar County, an increase of 2,082 new cases as of Monday. Thirteen new deaths were reported today.
The mayor says some of Sunday’s cases were included in Monday’s numbers due to a backlog.
The 7-day moving average of cases is 1,722.
City officials also reported that 1,402 patients are hospitalized, 409 are in the intensive care unit and 263 are on ventilators. There are 13% of staffed beds available and 51% of ventilators available.
Nirenberg said the COVID-19 Risk Level this week is “severe,” and many of the risk indicators have either stabilized or improved for the first time in weeks. The positivity rate has decreased to 15%, down from 17.5% last week.
Wolff said the Bexar County Hospital District will be administering first doses of the vaccine at the Wonderland Mall site to those in the Phase 1B category this week. The following week, those people will get their second vaccine dose.
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