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The COVID Vaccine - What's Up in Pamlico County
Phase details and limited supplies
January 16, 2021

here is confusion and some frustration about when the COVID-19 vaccine will be available. It is being given initially to the highest risk groups. As of January 16, there have been 540 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered in Pamlico County.

The following is from information supplied by the Pamlico County and NC Public Health Departments.

The NC Department of Public Health receives its supply of vaccine from the federal government. Currently, demand for the COVID-19 vaccine exceeds the state’s limited supply. Each week, the Pamlico County Health Department (PCHD) is notified of how many doses of vaccine it will receive the following week.

The amount fluctuates weekly depending upon available supply, and demand (the number of people that have registered to get the vaccine).

PCHD is currently the only recognized agency in Pamlico County that has State authority to administer COVID-19 vaccinations.

Recommendations for phase classifications may change in the future, but for now here is what they are. Only those in phases 1 and 2 are currently eligible for the vaccine.

An infographic with the 5 phases of vaccination in North Carolina.
Phases 1-5 as they are currently defined.

Group 1: Health care workers & Long-Term Care Staff and Residents
• Health care workers with in-person patient contact
• Long-term care staff and residents—people in skilled nursing facilities, adult care homes and continuing care retirement communities

Group2: Older Adults
• Anyone 65 years or older, regardless of health status or living situation. The state is prioritizing those 75 or older when there is limited vaccine supply.

Group 3: Frontline Essential Workers
• The CDC defines frontline essential workers as workers who are in sectors essential to the functioning of society and who are at substantially higher risk for exposure to COVID-19

Group 4: Adults at High Risk for Exposure and Increased Risk of Severe Illness
• Anyone 16-64 years old with high-risk medical conditions that increase risk of severe disease from COVID-19 such as cancer, COPD, serious heart conditions, sickle cell disease, Type 2 diabetes, among others, regardless of living situation
• Anyone who is incarcerated or living in other close group living settings who is not already vaccinated due to age, medical condition or job function
• Essential workers not yet vaccinated. The CDC defines these as workers in transportation and logistics, water and wastewater, food service, shelter and housing (e.g., construction), finance (e.g., bank tellers), information technology and communications, energy, legal, media, public safety (e.g., engineers) and public health workers

Group 5: Everyone Who Wants a Safe and Effective COVID-19 Vaccination

Source: covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vaccines

For those calling PCHD, it has been hard to get through. Busy signals are a frequent experience. There are currently three incoming lines. County Manager Tim Buck tells TownDock.net that 8 more phone lines are being added, expected by Wednesday January 20. Buck says the new lines will both allow additional staff to answer calls, plus at least make sure calls go through to the answering system instead of ringing busy.

Currently, Pamlico County Health Department is scheduling appointments well into February 2021. Waiting time may vary according to the amount of vaccine available.

Register for your COVID-19 Vaccination

Send your information by email to: c19vac@pamlicocounty.org or call the Pamlico County Health Department at 252-745-5111.

Seniors aged 65 and over needing assistance with email or registering can contact the Pamlico County Senior Center at (252) 745-7196. (Please be patient if you receive a busy signal or are put on hold. Additional phone lines are coming soon.)

1. PCHD needs the following information to get you registered -please have it handy when you call.
• Your First and Last Name
• Your date of birth (Please give the month name instead of the number, for example: April 19, 1945)
• Your email address (Note: you cannot use a shared email account; each individual must use a separate email address)

2. PCHD will submit your information to the State on the day it is received.

3. You will then receive an email notification from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) with a link that will direct you to complete a registration form. It is very important to complete every question or your registration may be delayed.

4. Within a short time -usually a day – you should receive another email from NCDHHS with your vaccination phase.
• If you are in phase 1b, you will then call the Pamlico County Health Department to schedule an appointment for your vaccine.
• If you are in a later phase, wait to call the Pamlico County Health Department until that phase is open for vaccination.
• Once those eligible for phase 1b are vaccinated, the PCHD will notify the public with information about phase 2. This will include how-to pre-register, and if there are changes in the process.

Posted Saturday January 16, 2021 by Allison DeWeese

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