As many already know, the first shipment of vaccine for COVID-19 recently arrived at Joplin medical facilities to begin immunizations of their patient facing healthcare workers. Residents and staff of long-term care facilities will also be eligible to receive vaccine in this initial phase.
In accordance with the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the State of Missouri’s COVID-19 Vaccination Plan states that local and regional healthcare organizations will be eligible to distribute the vaccine in their communities as credible partners in caring for their citizens if they enroll to do so. During this first stage of vaccinations, there will be a limited supply of vaccine and it will be targeted to those identified in the State of Missouri’s vaccination plan. (see graphic below for details)
Once the first phase is completed then the vaccine will be made available for those in the next phase. The second phase will include people who are considered high risk, first responders and essential workers. The speed to which the phases are moved though will be determined by the amount of vaccine that is available and how fast the vaccine is able to be administered.
“At this point, COVID vaccine supply is very limited,” said Joplin Health Director Ryan Talken. “The state has established a tiered system that dictates when specific groups of people will be targeted with the vaccine. Initially, patient facing health care workers and long-term care residents are given priority for receiving initial doses of the vaccine. As more doses and more vaccines become available, vaccine efforts will be expanded to other priority groups, including those over the age of 65 and essential workers. Additionally, more vaccinator providers will be available in the community including physician offices, pharmacies, clinics, and health departments.”
Talken noted that this is a unique time and the available information changes quickly. The City of Joplin’s Health Department will announce details about public vaccinations in upcoming months.
To help address questions and learn more about the vaccine and its distribution, visit www.MOstopsCovid.com This website is part of the educational efforts of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (MoDHSS) during the pandemic.
The following graphic, copied from the state’s website, illustrates the phases of the Missouri vaccine plan.