Well being officers introduced the subsequent part of the vaccine rollout, referred to as Section 1B, can be on an accelerated timeline.
Washington state well being officers supplied an replace on the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic on Wednesday afternoon.
Washington Division of Well being (DOH) Secretary Dr. Umair Shah, Deputy Secretary of Well being for COVID-19 Response Lacy Fehrenbach and State Epidemiologist Scott Lindquist have been among the many audio system Wednesday.
Well being officers introduced that the subsequent part of the vaccine rollout, referred to as Section 1B, can be on an accelerated timeline.
Throughout Section 1A, each doses of greater than 201,000 vaccines have been distributed to frontline medical staff, high-risk first responders and residents and workers of long-term care amenities, state well being officers mentioned Wednesday.
Final week, the division unveiled the next priority groups for coronavirus vaccination. Section 1B may have 4 tiers, starting with individuals age 70 or older and other people age 50 or older residing in multi-generational households.
DOH has not mentioned when Section 1B will start.
Fehrenbach mentioned the state has began sending textual content messages to Washingtonians enrolled within the WA Notify app who’ve examined optimistic for coronavirus. These recipients are given a hyperlink to inform their shut contacts of doable publicity. Fehrenbach mentioned 195 individuals have participated within the new course of thus far.
State officers additionally made a pitch for Washington residents who’re serious about serving to throughout emergencies. The WAServ website says, “Washington State Emergency Registry of Volunteers is for residents who’re keen and in a position to assist throughout disasters and important occasions. Register now to accomplice together with your native Public Well being, native hospital, neighbors, and others who want help.”
Washington state is predicted to launch a extra strong model of the PhaseFinder tool on Jan. 18, which is able to inform individuals if they’re eligible to obtain a vaccine and assist join them with suppliers.
Nevertheless, the Trump administration requested states Tuesday to speed the delivery of COVID-19 vaccines to individuals 65 and older and to others at excessive threat by not holding again the second dose of the two-dose shot.
In the meantime, statewide coronavirus restrictions have been eased this week as areas moved into Section 1 of Gov. Jay Inslee’s “Wholesome Washington” plan. The rules, which went into impact Monday, allowed resumption of some actions, together with health packages and reside leisure with tight restrictions.