Counties in the Cape Fear region begin transition to next phase in COVID-19 vaccination plan

Counties in Cape Fear region transition to next phase in vaccination program

SOUTHEASTERN NORTH CAROLINA (WECT) - Health officials in the Cape Fear region announced they are transitioning into the next phase of the state’s COVID-19 vaccination plan.

Pender County

Pender County Health and Human Services announced Tuesday that vaccinations are underway for Phase 1a and Phase 1b Group 1, which includes county healthcare providers and residents 75 years of age and older, regardless of health conditions.

“Vaccinations are scheduled for Tuesdays in Burgaw and Thursdays at the Hampstead Annex – as long as we have supplies of the vaccine,” said Carolyn Moser, Pender County Health and Human Services director.

All residents eligible for Phase 1b Group 1 (age 75 years and older) should call (910) 259-1230 to schedule an appointment as the health department cannot accept walk-ins. Appointments are necessary to ensure vaccine is available.

“Our phone lines have been extremely busy since the vaccine arrived,” said Moser. “We urge patience and please continue to call 910-259-1230 for an appointment.”

Click here for details of Pender County’s vaccination roll-out plan.

Brunswick County

Brunswick County Health Services announced Tuesday it would begin scheduling appointments for individuals aged 75 years or older at 9 a.m., Wednesday, January 6.

All individuals, in Phase 1b, Group 1 of the vaccine roll-out, are eligible to receive the vaccine free of charge from Brunswick County Health Services. Phase 1a health care workers administering the vaccine and working with COVID-19 patients, and long-term care staff and residents in nursing facilities should have already received or be scheduled to receive the vaccine.

As of January 5, Brunswick Health Services only has about 100 appointments available based on current vaccine supplies in Brunswick County. Once these appointments fill, callers are encouraged to call back another day as more vaccines are being received weekly.

“While we only have a small number of vaccines available, we wanted to open up to Phase 1b Group 1 to start the process of vaccinating this group as soon as possible,” Health and Human Services Director David Stanley said. “We expect to receive more doses from the state next week. We stand ready to vaccinate more and partner with other providers to help vaccinate as more doses of vaccine are sent to our county.”

To schedule an appointment, call the Public Health Call Line at (910) 253-2339 and select the option for vaccine information. Listen for the prompt to enter the queue to schedule an appointment. Lines are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Appointments are dependent on availability of the vaccine. Supplies of the vaccine to Brunswick County Health Services depend on how many vaccines are sent by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS). The NCDHHS also decides what type of vaccine (e.g., Moderna, Pfizer) the county receives. Individuals should receive the same type of vaccine for both doses.

The county health department will update the public on when and how it plans to distribute vaccines in subsequent phases.

Click here for more information about the vaccine roll-out in Brunswick County.

Bladen County

Bladen County Health and Human Services Agency announced early Tuesday it will move into Phase 1b of the North Carolina COVID-19 vaccination plan on Wednesday, January 6.

The health department intends to begin vaccinating Group 1 of Phase 1b, which includes anyone 75 years or older, regardless of health status or living situation. Anyone in this group can call 910-862-6900 extension 6220 to schedule an appointment to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

New Hanover County

New Hanover County Public Health announced that it will transition to the next phase in the the state’s COVID-19 vaccine plan on Thursday, Jan. 7.

Those able to receive a COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday through New Hanover County Public Health will be people in Phase 1a and people in group one of Phase 1b. This includes:

  • Anyone 75 years or older, regardless of health status or living situation;
  • Health care workers caring for and working directly with patients with COVID-19, including staff responsible for cleaning and maintenance in those areas;
  • Health care workers administering vaccine; and
  • Long term care staff and residents – people in skilled nursing facilities and in adult, family and group homes.

Adults who meet the above criteria should call the Coronavirus Call Center at 910-798-6800 to sign up for a time slot to get a vaccine. The call center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

COVID-19 vaccines will be given to those eligible at one of two locations:

  • Health and Human Services building (1650 Greenfield Street): Monday –Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
  • Senior Resource Center (2222 South College Road): Monday-Friday,1 p.m.-7 p.m.

“To be as efficient as possible as we open vaccinations to new groups, we are implementing an easy appointment process,” said Health and Human Services Director Donna Fayko. “Anyone over 75 (which is Phase 1b, Group 1) or who meets the criteria of Phase 1a can call 910-798-6800 during regular business hours. They will speak with a staff member who will provide them with a day and timeframe to be vaccinated at one of our two vaccine locations. We anticipate that we will be in this phase and group for a few weeks, so there will be time for those who fit this criteria to be vaccinated and you don’t have to come on day one. We do expect a surge of appointments at first, so please know there may be some wait times.”

Currently, the only authorized COVID-19 vaccinators in New Hanover County are the county’s Public Health Department and New Hanover Regional Medical Center. County health official anticipate that some local physician practices will receive authorization to administer the vaccine to their patients who fit the outlined criteria in the coming weeks as well.

“Public Health is charged with implementing the state’s vaccination plan, their phases, groups and timing,” Fayko added. “I believe we have a good plan in place and great partners to make our vaccination operations as efficient and effective as possible.”

Columbus County

Columbus County will begin administering vaccines to the first group in Phase 1b Monday, January 11.

Beginning January 7, eligible county residents can call 910-640-6615 to schedule an appointment to receive their vaccine.

Full execution of the COVID-19 vaccine plan is expected to take up to nine months, so health officials are encouraging residents to continue to follow all protective measures like wearing a face covering, maintaining physical distance from others, avoiding gatherings, and washing hands well and often.

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