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COVID-19 Vaccine Planning

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COVID-19 Vaccine Planning

In December and early January, Myrtue Medical Center and Public Health have been offering and providing COVID-19 vaccines to healthcare workers that live and work in Shelby County. Healthcare workers and Long Term Care facility residents and staff were identified as Tier IA priority group populations by the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) through recommendations by the Infectious Disease Advisory Council. Long Term Care facilities, locally and throughout Iowa, have been receiving vaccine through the Long Term Care National Pharmacy Partnership Agreement.

Now that Tier IA vaccinations are underway, IDPH is working on providing Tier 1B priority group guidance to local public health agencies. Once Tier IA populations across the state have been vaccinated, the focus will shift to IB priority groups. These priority groups will be based on the goals of preventing morbidity and mortality (age priority) and preserving societal functioning (frontline essential workers).

When final guidance for Tier 1B priority groups from the Iowa Department of Public Health is officially released, Myrtue Medical Center’s Public Health Department will begin taking reservations for the COVID-19 vaccine. This guidance will come out well before we actually have the vaccine, but the time between release of guidance and receipt of vaccine will allow us to prepare for upcoming COVID clinics. At this time, the best estimate for receipt of 1B vaccine is late January or early February. Please listen or watch for information on reserving your vaccine via radio, newspaper, and Myrtue Medical Center’s website and Facebook page.

It is very important to recognize that the demand for the vaccine is going to exceed the supply that we are allocated through IDPH. Myrtue Medical Center’s Public Health Department asks for your understanding and patience as we go through the priority groups as quickly as we can with limited vaccine. As the supply of vaccine increases, we will work with our community partners to quickly and safely vaccinate Tier IB populations.