Today, Howard County Executive Calvin Ball updated the community on the COVID-19 vaccination process and distribution. To date, the Howard County Health Department has received 4,500 vaccines and administered more than 2,600 doses. Ball noted that Howard County Health Department will have 100% of its current vaccine allocation administered by Tuesday and is expecting additional doses early next week. Vaccine summary information has also been added to the COVID-19 Dashboard. Photos of the event can be found here. Video can be found here.
“With hope on the horizon, it is critical that we implement a safe, efficient vaccine administration process,” said Ball. “We will work quickly, effectively, and equitably to vaccinate our community members as we receive vaccine from our partners at the State. We know that this vaccine is a key to long-term recovery from COVID-19, and in order to get back to hugging our loved ones, sharing meals with family and friends, returning to school and workplaces, we must all work together.”
Ball acknowledged the need to rapidly increase distribution similar to how Howard County scaled up COVID-19 testing last Spring. The Administration is committed to rapidly creating clinics and supporting infrastructure for vaccine, this includes:
· Increasing training of additional staff and volunteers, including the National Guard and HCPSS nurses.
· Working through site selection and evaluating sites across the County
· Consistently communicating information through the Health Department
· And working with public and private partners to ensure that distribution is accessible to everyone as supply becomes available – including clinics that are offered 7 days a week
“With a limited supply of available vaccine, the Health Department is working as quickly, efficiently and as safely as possible to get vaccine to those first responders and healthcare providers in Phase 1A,” said Dr. Maura Rossman, Howard County Health Officer. “As supply increases, we will expand our clinics to add additional locations and hours. We understand that people are looking to receive vaccinations immediately, but we ask for your patience and cooperation while vaccine is limited. We will let the public know as soon as we are able to move to Phase 1B.”
COVID-19 Vaccination Phases:
· PHASE 1A: We are in 1A with an estimated 5,000-7,000 providers in this group based on industry and Board licensure data.
o Group 1A includes all licensed, registered and certified health care providers, law enforcement, firefighters, EMS, nursing home residents and staff, correctional health care staff and officers
o If the rate of supply availability and distribution increases or remains steady, Phase 1A in Howard County is likely to be majority completed by the end of January but will be an ongoing phase.
· PHASE 1B: There are an estimated 30-35,000 people in Phase 1B
o Group 1B includes assisted living, group homes, other congregate facilities, continuity of government, education – including teachers and childcare professionals, and adults over the age of 75.
o The timeline for completion of 1B is early March
· PHASE 1C: There are an estimated 35-40,000 people in Phase 1C
o Group 1C includes adults 65-74, public safety not covered in 1A, public health workers not covered in 1A, food agriculture production, manufacturing, postal service, public transit and grocery employees.
o The timeline for completion of 1C is too early to project but could be as early as May.
· PHASE 2: Includes adults 16-64 with underlying illness due to comorbidities, incarcerated adults, essential workers and critical utilities, transportation logistics and infrastructure.
· PHASE 3: Includes healthy adults 16-64
For more information about Howard County’s vaccine distribution, including FAQs about the COVID-19 vaccines, please visit the Howard County Health Department’s page here.
See all photos from the event from Scott E’s Blog here: