Schouten COVID vaccine

Private providers have partnered with the Gila County Health and Emergency Department and the federal government to provide vaccines in offices such as the one Dr. James Schouten was in when he received his second COVID vaccine shot. 

The Gila County Health Department is continuing to work with community partners to administer the vaccine to the residents of Gila County.

The county is now administering second doses to Group 1A, while continuing efforts to vaccinate education and child care workers, as well as the protective services individuals from Group 1B.

At the same time, Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center in Globe and Banner Health Clinic Payson will administer the vaccine to those individuals 75 and older.

Currently, the Gila County Health Department does not have enough available vaccine to vaccinate the 65 and older group.

“We ask for patience, please, as all your community partners and health department staff are working very hard to administer the vaccine allotted us to move as quickly as we can into Group 1C,” said Michael O’Driscoll, director of Gila County Health and Emergency Management.

In order to assist residents, the county has teamed up with community volunteers including the MHA Foundation, Northern Gila County Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), and missionaries from the LDS church to open a call center to those individuals who are in Group 1B.

Group 1B includes education and child care workers, protective services occupations, essential services/critical infrastructure workers, and adults 75 and older. The number is 928-402-8888 with hours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

In addition, submit questions via email to covid19vaccine@gilacountyaz.gov.

“Due to the recent snowstorm, we are also experiencing a delay in setting up the call center volunteers in our Payson location, which may increase call back times,” he said. “We expect a large volume of calls and would ask the residents who are not in Groups 1A and 1B to please refrain from calling into the call center at this time. This will allow us to focus our efforts to more quickly assist those residents in the groups we are vaccinating. In addition, we ask for patience and understanding, as there will likely be a delay in responding to inquiries if the volume of calls and emails are high.”

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