Humboldt County opening up phase 1B of Covid-19 vaccine distribution

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HUMBOLDT COUNTY, Calif. (KIEM) — Humboldt County is officially opening up phase 1B of Covid-19 vaccine distribution. This includes people 75 years old and older, which is about 10,000 people locally. While California has included people 65 to 74 years old in that category, Humboldt County has opted not to.

“Due to the fact that there is not enough vaccine currently available to open to all 65 year olds in Humboldt County,” according to Humboldt County Health Officer Dr. Ian Hoffman.

Health care providers will reach out to patients who meet the age criteria, and County Health Officer Dr. Ian Hoffman has suggested those people are brought in based on their risk factor. Public Health will accommodate anyone that might not have a primary care doctor in the area. This will be through larger vaccination clinics.

“That’s where folks who don’t have a medical home or their primary care provider isn’t able to, or for a variety of reasons we would want them to capture them to. So we have contingency plans right, providers doing vaccinations for patients and then these clinics that we’re setting up,” according to Public Health Director Michele Stephens.

Speaking of health care providers, all 10,000 health care workers in the County have been offered vaccines and there is enough supply. Right now, the county has 5,200 doses that haven’t been used. Second dose efforts will continue, but 50% of those 2nd doses are now able to be used as 1st doses.

“This plan would allow for increased rate of first doses and with the hope that down the line there would be enough second doses to give,” Hoffman says.

The County is expecting to receive anywhere between 2,000 to 4,000 doses each week moving forward. Health care providers will begin contacting people 75 years old and older next week. More information on the County’s vaccine distribution plan can be found at www.humboldtgov.org.