DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — The Alabama Department of Public Health is speeding up its vaccine distribution for its providers across the state.
Monday, the ADPH reported that 255,291 total doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered those under Phase 1a and 1b in the state’s distribution plan. This is almost half of the 521,225 doses delivered to Alabama outside of Federal Long Term Care programs.
In total, 326,000 healthcare providers and law enforcement officers and 350,000 people over 75 years of age are eligible for vaccination.
To help ensure that vaccines are done in an efficient manner, the ADPH is doing healthcare surveys to assess each provider’s performance. This is to make sure all administered doses are properly reported.
Unused doses will be removed from providers and given to others that can give the shots faster.and redistributing the vaccine to providers who will give shots faster. No vaccine doses have been discarded.
Vaccine Distribution Plans Adjusted
We have had an extensive plan in place to administer COVID-19 vaccine statewide since October. The plan must pivot based on priorities from the federal government. Adjustments needed to be made to offer vaccine first to those at highest risk because of the small quantity of vaccine.
Accelerating Pace of Vaccine Rollout
Healthcare provider surveys will help ensure vaccine administration is expedited. ADPH is surveying every healthcare provider in the state to ensure that all administered doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been properly reported in our electronic data system and to determine if there is any available vaccine that needs to be redistributed to other providers. To expedite vaccine administration, ADPH is removing unused doses and redistributing the vaccine to providers who will give shots faster. No vaccine doses have been discarded.
Vaccine Doses Delivered to Alabama—521,225
Alabama Healthcare Providers Enrolled—883
Toll-free Telephone Lines for Appointments—165
Plans to Expand Vaccination Sites in Place
ADPH is working with Wal-Mart and other large companies which will provide vaccinations as more vaccine becomes available. New locations will expand access to care for more people and resolve some transportation issues in rural areas.
Expansion of age groups for vaccination to persons 65 and above
At the final Operation Warp Speed briefing on January 12, 2021, spokespersons for HHS recommended that states expand age groups for vaccination to persons 65 and above. However, these changes have not been made in Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance for when vaccine supply is limited. Vaccine supply is limited and does not meet demand at this time for the current numbers of persons identified as healthcare workers, first responders, fire, police, and persons 75 and above. Current recommendations from CDC are based on those from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). ACIP is an independent panel of medical and public health experts who provide vaccine guidance to CDC.