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Washoe County weekly COVID-19 vaccine allotments have increased

By Jeri Davis
A case containing doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

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Washoe County is seeing an increase in its weekly allocation of COVID-19 vaccines, and health officials say they think it’s likely this will continue.

While weekly requests for vaccines in the county have continued to be in excess of 10,000 doses, the county was consistently receiving only about half of that. This week, however, the county will receive 6,825 first doses. The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) will receive 56% of that allotment. The rest will be doled out among other vaccine providers in the county.

WCHD’s James English speaks to media in December when the first doses of COVID-19 vaccine arrived.
Image: Trevor Bexon

According to WCHD’s James English, that number is expected for the next two weeks as well. He does not believe the county will see its weekly allotment decrease back to the 5,500 level at which it sat for several weeks last month.

Between Thursday and Saturday of last week, the health district administered 1,937 first doses and 1,815 second doses—with more than 1,100 of those second doses going to people 70 years old and older.

On Monday, WCHD was planning to give 801 school and childcare workers their second doses and 700 seniors their first doses.

English said that the health district has seen a decline in the number of people accepting their invitations to schedule vaccination but that this has leveled out at about 70% at this point. He said “no-shows” to vaccination appointments have been few but that many people have been trying to reschedule their first dose appointments to avoid having their second dose appointments fall during the upcoming spring break times for the school district.

People are also advised to accept their invitations to schedule a vaccination upon receiving them. Waiting could cause a delay for people to get vaccinated, English said.

Currently, the health district is inviting approximately 3,000 essential workers to points of distribution (PODs) each week. WCHD also keeps tabs on a waiting list for those who are eligible to receive the vaccine. English said that some people have used multiple email addresses to sign up for the waiting list hoping to increase their chances of being selected and encouraged those who’ve received their first doses either through the health district or another vaccine provider in the community to notify WCHD so they are able to keep waiting lists up to date. The health district can be informed of this through email or its call center.

Vaccines in Washoe County are not being wasted, English said. He said that fewer than 10 doses of vaccine have been lost in total, and that these were the result of either syringe or needle failure.

The total number of COVID-19 vaccines administered in Washoe County will surpass 70,000 after today’s vaccination of school and childcare workers and seniors. As of Monday morning, nearly 45,500 first doses had been administered and nearly 24,500 second doses.

A dashboard detailing vaccine distribution in the county can be viewed here. It provides a detailed breakdown of vaccine providers and how many doses have been administered by each.   

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