Deep East Texas health providers prepare for eventual COVID-19 vaccine administration

Deep East Texas health providers prepare for eventual COVID-19 vaccine administration

NACOGDOCHES AND LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - Anita Humphreys, the director of the East Texas Community Health Services can’t recall vaccine enrollment happening before there’s even an approved vaccine. She understands why COVID-19 is the procedural exception.

"It’s so the distribution will be more seamless, and the community will have quicker access because the supply chain will have already been established,” Humphreys explained.

In Nacogdoches, Anita Humphreys, director of East Texas Community Health Services reads over enrollment information for administering the COVID-19 vaccine once it’s available. (Source: KTRE Staff)
In Nacogdoches, Anita Humphreys, director of East Texas Community Health Services reads over enrollment information for administering the COVID-19 vaccine once it’s available. (Source: KTRE Staff) (Source: KTRE Staff)

The public health care worker and Sharon Shaw, the director of the Angelina County and Cities Health District, are in the process of filling out the enrollment paperwork.

“We’re expecting the vaccine maybe within the next 90 days,” Shaw said.

When it happens, Shaw wants district health partners to be ready.

“The process has started. Our local hospitals are signing up to be a vaccination site,” Shaw said.

Front line health care workers will have first access to a voluntary vaccine. Emergency workers, including fire and police, are next in line.

“And then going down to the general public within the next six to nine months,” Shaw explained.

The directors suggested that all health care providers to consider enrolling.

“It would be prudent on your part to at least be knowledgeable of what’s out there, how to become a provider should you choose to, and if you have questions send those into DSHS now,” Humphreys suggested.

Shaw added It’s still a work in progress across the nation, but just know that local agencies and local public health representatives are out there making sure we enroll quickly and that we get the right infrastructure enrolled so we can vaccinate in a timely manner.

For more information n the DSHS Immunization Program, visit EnrollTexasIZ.dshs.texas.gov.

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