Phase 1b of COVID-19 vaccinations is underway in Columbus County

Phase 1b of COVID-19 vaccinations is underway in Columbus County
On Monday, the Columbus County Health Department began giving COVID-19 vaccines under phase 1b. (Source: WECT)

COLUMBUS COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - Phase 1b of the Coronavirus vaccinations began in Columbus County Monday.

This allows those 75 years of age or older to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Kim Smith, the Columbus County Health Director says it’s all hands on deck right now.

“With all of our staff, we are still held to the clinics that we have to have,” said Smith. “For the state, we’re still held to those contracts. And so anyone, anything that we’ve been able to stop doing, we have stopped, and everybody else is on hands-on-deck doing COVID vaccinations in one way, one shape form or another. If they’re not actually giving it, then they are getting the information from that as required. So, we are doing all that we could possibly do right now.”

Last week, the health department announced they are booked for vaccinations through the rest of January. They will resume scheduled appointments on Feb. 1.

“There will be enough vaccine for anyone who wants one,” said Smith. “It might not be here today. But we will have the vaccine, it will roll around. The state is actually trying to get other venues, federally qualified health centers, private physicians, offices, pharmacies to come on board. I know there is training this week for some of that group. So it won’t be just here. It will be in other places as well.”

Smith says that it’s important to remember to practice safety precautions, even after you’re vaccinated.

“We just need everyone to feel the need to get the vaccine such as we do,” said Smith. “It is very important that...there are people that unfortunately, it’s come too late for them, and they have already moved on...and it’s just sad, that. You know, we need to wear our masks, stay the six feet of distance, and wash our hands frequently. And when it comes time to get your vaccine, please come and get your vaccine.”

Smith expects more shipments of the vaccines within the coming days.

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