KANSAS CITY, Mon – Missouri entered Phase 1-b, Tier 3 on Monday, adding 500,000 people to its COVID-19 vaccine list. I still have a hard time getting a vaccine appointment.
Getting a vaccination appointment is a frustration for many people as appointments are filled as soon as they open. There is a lot of competition.
“If you’re on Jackson County’s list, we’re going to reach out to these people and plan,” said Charlie Shields, president and CEO of Truman Medical Centers, University Health.
Truman accepts the challenge of administering the COVID-19 vaccines during this week’s mass vaccination event at Arrowhead Stadium. At least 6,000 individual COVID-19 vaccines will be administered by Johnson and Johnson on Friday and Saturday.
“The other way is they can go to the state’s website and actually log in,” Shields told many people.
The state will reach out to people on Mondays and Tuesdays through its Vaccine Navigator System to make appointments. If additional slots are open later in the week, those will be offered to people who have signed up with the Jackson County Health Department.
Kansas City Health Director Dr. Rex Archer, who raised concerns that the Kansas City area had not received a fair share of vaccines, said Tier 3 should only be opened to teachers so students could go back to school. He is now supporting a larger group due to a postponement of the vaccine distribution schedule.
“Region A is slated to get more vaccines in late March,” said Archer. “I’m not that concerned about opening tier three.”
The Missouri Vaccine Dashboard shows Region A, where 23% of the population has only received 20% of the vaccines to date. Archer said our region will now receive 24% of the vaccine supply.
“We should have our subway allocation by the end of April, so it’s good to move on to the third stage,” said Archer. “We’re going to prioritize, though, because we can’t open all levels three if we still have people over 65 who aren’t vaccinated.”
Governor Parson’s office sent this statement regarding entry into Tier 3:
“The range of vaccines has increased significantly, and our federal partners have informed us that we should expect a significant increase in the range of vaccines from the manufacturers of the three approved vaccines in the next few weeks. This is one of the main reasons Tier 3 is enabled today. This announcement was made in advance to allow employers with critical infrastructure to connect with vaccinators in their area and develop plans to vaccinate their workforce once they are eligible. We continue to work with the group of 1,000+ registered vendors to ensure they are ready for this new pace. Even so, current supply is still being exceeded by demand, which means that prioritizing people based on risk will continue to take place. We expect Missouri to make significant strides in vaccination efforts over the next month. “
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