Gila County Health & Emergency Management COVID-19 vaccine FAQ sheet:
Q: What vaccine is Gila County using?
Q: What group is Gila County in for administering the COVID-19 Vaccine?
A: Gila County has officially moved into Group 1B and is working with community partners to complete the education & childcare workers and protective services sub-groups.
Q: How many vaccines are being sent to the Gila County Health Department each week?
A: The number of vaccines each county receives from the CDC and ADHS is based on a population formula. Recently, all county health departments were notified by ADHS that their vaccine allocations were being drastically reduced. This reduction was due to demand for the vaccine outpacing the production. Gila County will receive only 300 vaccine doses each week for the next 4-6 weeks. Gila County Health Department Director, Michael O’Driscoll, has sent an official request to ADHS for additional vaccines.
Q: How will this reduction in vaccine affect the residents of Gila County?
A: This will have no effect on how the vaccine is administered. However, this reduction will limit the number of vaccines the county can administer and will slow down its ability to work through the current 1B Group because of the large population of essential workers and residents over the age of 75.
Q: Was there a change in when 65 and older individuals are eligible to receive the vaccine?
A: In a press briefing on Tuesday, Jan. 12, outgoing Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar put forward new recommendations for everyone 65 and older and people under 65 with documented chronic health conditions such as high blood pressure, cancer, chronic lung disease, and heart disease.
Q: What does the change in when 65 and older individuals and people under 65 with documented chronic health conditions mean to residents to Gila County?
A: Because of the size of the population in Group 1B combined with the amount of vaccine needed being far greater than the county is receiving, it will continue to work with community partners to vaccinate the 75 and older population and the newly added 65 and older population but progress will be very slow.
Q: How come the Gila County Health Department does not have a list of planned vaccination clinics?
A: Vaccine is in such short supply right now that the county can only plan clinics when it knows how many vaccines are allocated each week. In addition, the 300 vaccines the county receives each week is split between community partners so it can be administered in both Northern and Southern Gila County.
Q: Is there a phone number or website we can use to sign up for the vaccine or be put on a waiting list?
A: Not at this time. Up to this point the vaccine distribution in Group 1A and 1B have been completed through closed Point of Distribution (POD’s), closed meaning that the individuals getting vaccinated were known to the Gila County Health Department and a registration system was not needed. When the county can move further into Group 1B, officials will utilize a vaccine management tool provided by ADHS. This vaccine management tool requires a date to put inputted into the system to generate open registrations. At this time, the county does not have enough vaccine on hand or known allotments of the vaccine to begin scheduling open POD’s.
Q: How will I know what group Gila County is in for administering COVID-19 vaccine?
A: The Gila County Health Department uses Facebook postings, county website updates, and press releases to notify the residents. Information will be posted and periodically updated on our Gila County Health & Emergency Management and Gila County Facebook page, as well as on www.Readygila.com
Q: Are the staff and residents of long-term care and skilled nursing facilities being vaccinated?
A: The Federal Government has contracted with CVS and Walgreens to administer the vaccine to this group and all the licensed long-term care and skilled nursing facilities in Gila County have signed agreements with CVS and Walgreens to have the COVID-19 vaccine administered to their staff and residents. This process has begun across AZ, and each facility will be working directly with CVS and/or Walgreens to get their residents and staff vaccinated.
As of Jan. 13, 2021