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Roanoke City / Alleghany Health District Provides Update on COVID-19 Vaccine Availability

The following information about availability of the COVID-19 vaccine was provided by the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health District (VDH):

We know the demand is great and we at the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health Districts (RCAHD) are working with our vaccine providing partners (i.e., Carilion, Lewis Gale, some of our local pharmacies) to try to expand as many possibilities as we can to deliver vaccine. It’s going to take time and we have limited supply.  It is good news that people are interested in receiving the vaccine, but we are not able to handle the volume of calls we are currently receiving. We believe we may have over 50,000 eligible recipients in Phase 1b, solely in the RCAHD area. Please be patient as we get these processes up and running.

If you are over 75 and can stay home and stay safe, please do.

  • If you are fortunate enough to have the ability to stay home and be safe, we are asking you to delay receiving your vaccine for the moment.
  • It is important for us to get vaccine to our public-facing, frontline essential workers who should be at the front of the line because they don’t have the option to stay home.
  • If you can stay home and defer your vaccine for a few weeks, it will help all of us, and would be the biggest gift you can give to your community right now.
  • There is a link on our website to allow people over age 75 who are interested in receiving vaccine to let us know of their interest, but RCAHD is not generally registering this group for vaccine now.

What we ARE doing now:

  • RCAHD’s goal is to have as many options for venues (such as pharmacies and doctors’ offices) to receive vaccine as soon as possible for aged 75 and older, but we haven’t finalized these processes yet. We are actively working with our community providers, such as Lewis Gale and Carilion, about readying these expanded vaccine options for those aged 75 and older. We will announce them publicly through the media, as soon as possible.
  • Working with our partners is a slower process in these first few days of our rollout, but in the long run it will allow us to reach more people, more quickly.
  • We are all working together with our partners on how people will register, including 75-plus year olds—stay tuned.
  • We are still working very hard to provide vaccinations to the healthcare providers who were already eligible in the first Phase 1a.

We are overwhelmed with phone calls and inquiries, but the health of the public is a priority to us. We are thrilled by the huge numbers of people who have expressed that they are ready for the vaccine. Please be patient as we develop the framework to get everyone vaccine that wants one. And, in the meantime, nothing is more important than continuing to practice the 3 Ws: wash your hands, watch your distance and wear a mask.  We expect to have more information about the enrollment process later this week or next week. Stay tuned to local news media where we will broadcast updates widely.

Sign up for more information on the VDH website or watch the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health District Facebook page and local media for more information.

To hear a message from Dr. Cynthia Morrow about the vaccination, click here.

For more information, you can also visit the City’s Vaccinate Roanoke website.

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