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COVID-19 vaccine arrives in Nevada

By Sudhiti Naskar

On Monday afternoon, the first doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Nevada. The end of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic is still far away, but America is striding toward that goal along with the rest of the world. 

“Nevada is set to receive 25,350 doses of Pfizer vaccine in the first week’s allocation. Of that allocation, 7,800 doses will be distributed to pharmacy partners for long term care facilities, and 17,550 will be distributed to counties for local hospitals,” the Nevada Health Response team announced in a press release. 

A total of 91,650 doses of the Pfizer vaccine will reach the state by the end of December in various shipments.

“This is a great day for Nevada and hope is on the horizon,” said Governor Steve Sisolak.  “I am proud of the collaboration that has gone into this effort and I want all Nevadans to know that while this first allocation is small, it is the first of many.” 

Large scale vaccinations will take months to happen, and Sisolak asked Nevadans to continue with their social distancing, masking and handwashing efforts. 

The draft of Nevada’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program Playbook for Statewide Operations can be found on the Nevada Health Response website.  

Doses ordered by county:

  • Carson City: 405  
  • Clark: 12,620  
  • Churchill: 40  
  • Douglas: 10  
  • Elko: 245  
  • Esmerelda: 0
  • Eureka: 0
  • Humboldt: 225  
  • Lander: 45  
  • Lincoln: 45  
  • Lyon: 40  
  • Mineral: 35  
  • Nye: 10  
  • Pershing: 15  
  • Storey: 0  
  • Washoe: 3,655  
  • White Pine: 160  
  • Total: 17,550  

Meanwhile, hunger persists

The Coronavirus pandemic has split open the layers of persistent problems like food insecurity and hunger in America, unlike anything seen in recent times, state officials said Monday. Jennifer Ott, director of the Nevada Department of Agriculture (NDA) joined Caleb Cage, Nevada COVID-19 response director, and Julia Peek, deputy administrator of Community Health Services, during the weekly COVID-19 briefing to inform Nevadans about some of the plans. 

Ott said that NDA is committed to “safe and abundant supply” of food. They have worked to achieve the goal by connecting producers directly with consumers. The department is working with its community partners in schools, along with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and University of Nevada, Reno, to streamline access to food from school-aged children and seniors to college students

According to Feeding America, one in five Nevadans are food insecure, up from one in eight Nevadans before the pandemic. 

In an email to This Is Reno, an NDA official said that, “Apart from the CARES relief funds the NDA distributed to help augment existing programs and address food distribution gaps, staff continue to work closely with partners throughout the state to address food insecurity through several USDA nutrition programs.”

Those programs include the Emergency Food Assistance program, which helps supplement other nutrition programs such as SNAP. USDA support also provides free breakfasts and lunches to school-aged children through the Washoe County School District. 

For most NDA programs, it administers federal funding that provides access to USDA commodities that are distributed to communities by community partners. 

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