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COVID-19 vaccine: More people interested than doses available

Published: Jan. 13, 2021 at 5:23 PM CST
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - Area health departments and facilities continue to vaccinate the public against COVID-19.

However, the desire for a COVID-19 vaccine is greater than the number of doses received.

“The biggest message that we’re going to have to exercise some patience,” said Simpson County Judge-Executive Mason Barnes.

The Barren River District Health Department says they’ve received over 6,700 calls ahead of administering the shot for ages 70 and up Thursday, which appointments are already full.

The Barren River District Health Department is working diligently to ensure that everyone who wants a vaccine gets one...

Posted by Barren River District Health Department on Tuesday, January 12, 2021

“We already have 139 on the waitlist, and we cut the waitlist off yesterday because there was no need to build 300 or 400 people on a waitlist when chances are we may not get more than 100 doses to come Monday,” explained Barnes for his health department.

After the health department receives its doses, they will then send them out to the eight-county health departments that it covers.

“The Health Department will make a request on Wednesday for how many doses they think they’ll be able to dispense the following week, the state usually by Friday,” said Barnes. “We’ll take a look at that and say, okay, you’re going to receive X amount of doses. And so far for Simpson County, the maximum we’ve received was 100.”

However, Simpson County will use 50 of those doses for school personnel and then vaccinate 50 people ages 70 and up tomorrow. This plan actually is ahead of schedule, as Barren River Health Department predicted they wouldn’t begin vaccinating this phase 1b until February.

“We went through phase 1a a little quicker than we thought,” said Barnes.

Meanwhile, the area health departments are completely separate from the other health care facilities that are also administering the vaccine including Med Center and TJ Samson. Therefore, many at vaccinating at different paces as their timeline and plans are different. Med Center began phase 1b Monday.

“If you’re not on the waitlist here, you know, go ahead and call the first of next week. But if you have the ability to text to the Med Center, go ahead and get in that queue. And then just take the vaccine, whichever place brings you up the quickest,” said Barnes.

Below is an update on where each area or facility is at with the vaccine:

Barren River District Health - Vaccines for phase 1b (70+) begin Thursday, but appointments already booked up. Do not call the health department. They will provide links to sign up for appointments when those additional slots and vaccines are made available next week pending vaccine availability. This includes Warren, Barren, Metcalfe, Hart, Logan, Butler, Simpson, Edmonson counties.

Other Health Departments:

Allen County - Adding people 70+ to a vaccine waitlist, but not in-house. Call (270) 239-7378 to be added to the list.

Monroe County - Not yet approved, and haven’t received vaccines for phase 1b.

Grayson County - Added to the waiting list you must call the office at (270) 259-3141.

Other facilities:

Med Center Health: Vaccinations are through appointments ONLY by texting ‘SENIOR’ to 270-796-3200, or by emailing vaccine@mchealth.net. Do not text multiple times as this will reset your place in line.

T.J. Samson: Currently vaccinating in phase 1a at this time.

Greenview: n/a

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