AUSTIN, Texas - Austin Public Health announced Friday that the Texas Department of State Health Services will be sending APH's largest allocation of COVID-19 vaccine doses next week.
The next allocation will be part of a statewide program to pilot regional COVID-19 vaccine hubs, says APH.
The 12,000 doses, which APH says represents less than one percent of the area population, will be administrated to those who meet the State’s criteria for Phase 1A and 1B of vaccination which includes community healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities and residents 65 or older or residents with underlying health conditions that put them at increased risk for severe disease and death from COVID-19.
APH says it is expecting to receive the vaccine shipment next week and will begin administering vaccines to people in Phase 1A, specifically residents of long-term care facilities not enrolled in the federal pharmacy program, through a closed clinic.
APH says it has also been working since October with a coalition of partners to plan for vaccine dispensing in underserved areas. APH has strategically identified clinic locations in the hardest-hit communities that also accommodate the requirements of vaccine distribution. To protect patient privacy, locations will only be available to those with scheduled appointments.
In the days ahead, APH will be launching a COVID-19 vaccine registration system for area residents with a focus on vulnerable residents. Individuals who meet the State’s current criteria for vaccination may be able to receive the vaccine under this first allocation or through future allocations.
APH says that the system will have the ability to contact individuals to encourage them to schedule an appointment if and when APH is allocated additional vaccine. A phone line will also be available for those without internet access.
APD is reminding residents to remember that not everyone who fits the DSHS and APH criteria will be able to get the vaccine through this first large allocation from DSHS. APH also urges residents to be patient and keep exercising preventative measures to protect themselves and others.
APH is one of more than 350 groups distributing the vaccine in Austin-Travis County and is not the distributor or allocator of the vaccine locally. APH says that the amount of vaccines they receive each week is determined by DSHS.