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CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

Nash health care workers get COVID-19 vaccine

Next phase includes people 75 and older

Posted on January 2, 2021

Updated on January 4, 2021

Local newsTop news
Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department, prepares to administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

Contributed photo

Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department, prepares to administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

Brent Fisher, assistant director of fire, rescue and emergency management at Nash County Emergency Services, receives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 30 from Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department. Fisher will need a second dose in 28 days.

Contributed photo

Brent Fisher, assistant director of fire, rescue and emergency management at Nash County Emergency Services, receives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 30 from Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department. Fisher will need a second dose in 28 days.

Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department, prepares to administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

Contributed photo

Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department, prepares to administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

Brent Fisher, assistant director of fire, rescue and emergency management at Nash County Emergency Services, receives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 30 from Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department. Fisher will need a second dose in 28 days.

Contributed photo

Brent Fisher, assistant director of fire, rescue and emergency management at Nash County Emergency Services, receives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 30 from Bobbie Stallings, a nurse at the Nash County Health Department. Fisher will need a second dose in 28 days.

lkay@springhopeenterprise.com | 252-265-8117

NASHVILLE — The Nash County Health Department has administered the COVID-19 vaccine to its nurses and the county emergency services staff.

The first Moderna doses were given Dec. 30 and require a second shot in 28 days to finish the vaccination, said Jonathan Edwards, the county’s communications manager.

Local public health officials received their first shipment — 400 doses — of the COVID-19 vaccine just in time for Christmas, said Nash County Health Director Bill Hill.

Hill said the Moderna version of the vaccine doesn’t require cold storage like the Pfizer vaccine.

The first doses will go to front-line workers, including nurses at the health department. When more vaccine doses are made available, other groups of people will be eligible for the vaccine based on order of vulnerability. 

People who receive the coronavirus vaccine should still get a flu shot, Hill said.

Based on new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations issued recently by the CDC’s Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, state health officials have updated and simplified the vaccine prioritization plan.  

North Carolina’s updated phases include: 

• Phase 1a: Currently happening, provides vaccines for health care workers fighting COVID-19 and long-term care staff and residents. 

• Phase 1b: Set to begin soon, provides vaccines to adults 75 and older and front-line essential workers.

• Phase 2: Provides vaccines for adults at high risk for exposure and at increased risk of severe illness.  

• Phase 3: Provides vaccines to students.  

• Phase 4: Provides vaccine to anyone else who wants one.

Since there aren’t enough vaccines for everyone to be inoculated at the same time, the state will open the next phase of vaccinations in groups, starting only with people 75 and older, in order to best manage vaccine dose availability. 

All vaccine providers are expected to ensure that the vaccine is equitably administered within each group. State health officials have specific focus on building trust with historically marginalized populations. Longstanding and continuing racial and ethnic injustices in the health care system contributes to lack of trust in vaccines, Mandy Cohen, secretary of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, said in a Dec. 30 press release.

“The department is partnering with trusted leaders and organizations to provide accurate information about the vaccine,” Cohen said.

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