COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan
Governor J.B. Pritzker announced a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan for Illinois, with two vaccines possibly being distributed later in the month.
Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) director Dr. Ngozi Ezike said Illinois was initially supposed to receive 400,000 vaccines, but that number has been reduced to around 109,000.
Phase 1A of the vaccine distribution plan sees vaccinations being given to healthcare workers and long-term care facility residents first in the 50 counties with the highest death rates per capita.
The two vaccines that could be coming to Illinois are the Pfizer and Moderna versions.
- 95% effective
- Needs two doses over three weeks
- Requires ultra-cold storage
- FDA review planned for December 10
- Could begin to be distributed to healthcare workers in Illinois between December 13 and December 19
- 94% effective
- Needs two doses over four weeks
- Requires standard freezer storage
- FDA review planned for December 17
- Could begin to be distributed to healthcare workers in Illinois between December 20 and December 26
“Some quick math will tell you that it’s going to take multiple weeks of distribution to even get our healthcare workers their first of the two doses that they require while also getting to long-term care facility residents,” said Governor Pritzker at today’s COVID-19 briefing. “This will not be a quick process. With the two dose timeline, no single person will be fully vaccinated even by Christmas and it will likely be months before people with low-risk factors for COVID-19 see their first dose.”
Doctor Ezike said the CDC will directly ship vaccines to IDPH, which will be stored in their strategic national stock pile. 20 ultra-cold freezers have been purchased to store the Pfizer vaccine.
The governor said vaccines will not be mandatory for healthcare workers. Once distributed to hospitals, they can decide who gets vaccinated.
Walgreens and CVS have made a federal partnership to administer vaccinations to long-term care facility residents.
In a press release, the DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) said they are preparing to receive and distribute vaccines later this month.
The department plans to follow a multi-phased approach:
- Phase 1a: healthcare personnel and long-term care facility residents will be prioritized to receive the vaccine
- Phase 1b: essential workers
- Phase 1c: adults with high-risk medical conditions and adults 65 years and older
“This vaccine provides us a significant tool in battling this pandemic, however, it will be several months until there is significant supply to get most adults immunized,” said Karen Ayala, Executive Director of DuPage County Health Department. “So, it is important to maintain other public health prevention measures which we know will help us stop the spread of this virus and protect our communities,”
DCHD said the plan is subject to change.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the Will County Health Department plans on sending out surveys to first responders and healthcare workers to get details about their jobs so they can form a distribution plan.
The county also anticipates setting up drive-thru clinics to help with distribution.
Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.
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