SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Word that long term care facilities are next in line to get the vaccine come as good news to leaders at the Coastal Health District. However, distribution will not go as quickly as some had hoped.
Out of the 5,850 doses of the covid-19 vaccine given to the CHD, nearly two thirds have been distributed. As the department continues to vaccinate individuals through phase one of the process, health officials say it’s moving slower than anticipated due to logistical challenges using both Moderna and Pfizer in conjunction.
“We don’t want to open a new vile of Moderna at 5:00 in the afternoon if we don’t have 10 people there because if we give 5 doses, we can’t save the other 5 doses until the next morning because it’s more than 6 hours away making it unusable,” says Dr. Lawton Davis, Health Director at the Coastal Health District.
Right now, the hope is to be finished with phase one which includes health care workers as well as residents and staff at long term care facilities, by the end of January. As far as the general public, depending on supply, it will be several months from now before the vaccine becomes available.
“There are at least two other vaccines that are in phase three trials now. If they prove to be efficacious and safe, they’ll also come online and that would greatly augment our supply of vaccine,” adds Davis.
He says even though the vaccine is here, people still need to take precautions.
“We will still to continue wearing a mask and social distancing and if an individual is exposed he or she will continue to be required to quarantine.”