The Central District Health Department says its supply of COVID-19 vaccine is adequate enough to vaccinate all those who are 18 and older.
On Monday, the CDHD began vaccinating area residents who are at least 18.
“We expect to have enough doses going forward so that all who seek to (can) be vaccinated,” Health Director Teresa Anderson said in a statement.
The CDHD is working with area schools this week to provide doses to high school students who are at least 18 years of age and have written consent from a parent or guardian. School administrators will collect signed consent forms and serve as sites for vaccination clinics. In Nebraska, parental or guardian consent for vaccination is required for anyone younger than 19.
“The majority of our vaccine is Pfizer, which at this time is the one vaccine approved for ages 16 and up,” Anderson said. “When the time comes to reach out to a younger group, we will be ready. We also have Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen), which are approved for ages 18 and up.”
CDHD will continue to provide mass Pfizer vaccination clinics from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each Thursday at the Grand Island Fieldhouse at Fonner Park through April. At these weekly clinics, the CDHD, along with partners and volunteers, can give about 400 shots per hour. Pfizer doses are given 21 days apart, and there is no need for an appointment for either first or second doses at the Fieldhouse clinic.
Although no appointment is needed, people should first register at https://vaccinate.ne.gov.
If the first shot was given through a pharmacy program, arrangements for the second shot should be with that same pharmacy. Also, CDHD advises that reminder phone calls will not be made going forward.
“We are finding that once people know when and where the clinics are being held, they come. The phone calls were actually a bit confusing, so we are no longer calling people,” Anderson said. “We will find better ways to communicate clinic sites and times, so that people can plan in advance. We will be planning evening and weekend clinics starting next week and will be posting that schedule soon.”
CDHD has begun going to worksites to provide COVID-19 vaccinations similar to what it does with annual flu shots. Any employer interested in an onsite clinic may call CDHD to schedule one — 308-385-5175. According to the Nebraska COVID-19 vaccination dashboard, 24% of the district’s residents are fully vaccinated.
“We have given a lot of COVID-19 shots, but we need to give many, many more,” Anderson said.