Week 2 of COVID-19 vaccine distribution begins: Who is receiving doses in NC and how many?

North Carolina news

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – More COVID-19 vaccine doses are rolling out across North Carolina as the second week of distribution begins.

Hospitals and county health departments will get doses of Pfziers’ vaccine, but long-term care facilities say they are still waiting to hear when they will be allocated doses of Moderna’s vaccine and how much they will get.

The state expects to be allocated 176,000 doses of Moderna’s vaccine, more than half of which will be prioritized for long-term care facilities. 

The federal government partnered with CVS and Walgreens to administer vaccines to long-term care facilities.

“Everything is up to the state and when they make thier decisions, we scramble to make it happen,” said Marshal Carter, a pharmacy supervisor for multiple CVS locations in North Carolina.

Carter said CVS will provide pharmacists, nurses, pharmacy technicians who will go into facilities to administer the vaccine, exactly how they’ve held off-site flu clinics for several years.

“We do have situations where we will go into the patient’s room and vaccinate room by room. We do have a situation where we have common area set up with the vaccine and our staff so that the patients will come to us,” he said.

CVS expects to begin administering vaccines in 899 skilled nursing and assisted living facilities in North Carolina on Dec. 28.

“We’re ready to roll it out as soon as we can get the vaccine in stock,” Carter said.

Facilities like PruittHealth said it has been prepping for distribution of the vaccine to patients and frontline staff for several weeks, but are waiting for additional information about the distribution schedule.

“We are excited about the vaccine distribution and are eager to know how many doses PruittHealth will receive in this first wave,” PruittHealth said in a statement.

NCDHHS said for week two of shipments, the federal government allocated 61,425 Pfizer doses to North Carolina, which will go to 43 hospitals and three health departments.

NCDHHS said fewer hospitals will receive shipments in week two because the vaccines were shipped in units of 975 doses. 

Allocation for week two shipments was based on county population, ICU beds, and which facilities could handle Pfizer’s shipping requirements.

NCDHHS said because the Moderna vaccine will ship in smaller units, it will be sent to smaller hospitals. 

Wake County is one of the health departments that will receive Pfizer vaccine this week. 

The county expects to receive 975 doses of the vaccine Tuesday at the earliest and will begin administering it to a narrowly defined group” including health care workers at high risk for COVID-19 exposure based on work duties or those vital to the initial vaccine response, according to a spokesperson.

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