TEXAS CITY, Texas – On Thursday, the Galveston County Health District began vaccinating people who were 65 years and older.
Officials say they opened the COVID-19 phone bank on Wednesday and in less than two hours all appointments were filled.
“I called yesterday, and I got an appointment for today,” local resident David Throop said.
The county received 400 doses of the Moderna vaccine and Throop was happy to get his shot.
“I’m 65. I’m a diabetic, and I have two high school daughters who just returned to school after being in virtual mode in the last term. So I had that additional exposure that I was concerned about,” he said.
Another resident Doug Flewellen said the vaccine is a huge relief.
“I’m lucky to a point of near tears. I’m lucky. I know there are lots of people that argue but I’ll go for a vaccine. I’ll go for medicine. It’s too serious and too dangerous,” he said.
The Galveston County Health District said there are 21,611 positive cases, 5,251 are active and 193 people have died.
But help will soon be on the way for those who have been waiting to roll up their sleeves.
The Texas Department of State Health Services said it’s working on vaccination hubs across the state. The hope to provide doses to more than 100,000 people who are in Phase 1.
“It’s important like any other vaccine the flu shot and the vaccines we got as kids and I think that it’s important to get it to wipe this COVID out,” Jane McKinley said.
Providers will focus on vaccinating areas and populations hit hardest by COVID-19. It’s the hope for many as the fight against the virus continues.
“We have long way to go lots of vaccines to give out,” Flewellen said.
The Texas Department of State Health Services surveyed vaccine providers about their capacity to operate large community vaccination sites the week of Jan. 11 and will publish a list of vaccine hub providers later this week once vaccine allocation is finalized.
Large and small sites around Texas will receive a total of about 200,000 doses of vaccine next week. That will be the last week the state is required to reserve doses to vaccinate residents and staff of long-term care facilities under the federal pharmacy-LTC partnership, freeing up more vaccines for use in other settings in the future.
People can find more information on COVID-19 vaccine and its availability at dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/immunize/vaccine.aspx.