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City of Beaumont awaiting more vaccines as civic center being set up to serve as vaccination site

Mayor Becky Ames has requested 5,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from the State of Texas.

BEAUMONT, Texas — Even though the Beaumont Public Health Department has only been shipped very few vaccine doses the city is planning ahead and setting up to host a mass vaccine site in downtown Beaumont.

The Beaumont Civic Center is being set up to serve as a vaccination hub according to Beaumont Mayor Becky Ames.

Empty chairs and tables could be seen spread out around the empty floor of the civic center Tuesday morning.

Ames tells 12News she has requested 5,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from the State of Texas.

So far 100 doses of the vaccine have been shipped to the Beaumont Public Health Department according to the Texas Department of State Health Service’s vaccine availability map.

Mayor Ames says that the city will use a phone hotline for residents to use to register for the vaccines once they arrive.

When Texas Governor Greg Abbott was asked Tuesday during COVID-19 roundtable in Houston if he would commit to getting Beaumont the needed vaccines for the hub he passed the question over to Nim Kidd, the Chief of the Texas Division of Emergency Management.

Kidd said that Jefferson County has already received more than 14,000 doses of the vaccine and noted that the mayor has been a great supporter.

So far more than 10,000 doses shipped to Jefferson County have been sent or are on their way to the three major hospitals that have been mainly vaccinating health care workers and others in phase 1A.

Credit: KBMT

Some pharmacies in Southeast Texas have begun to vaccinate those in phase 1B.

The Port Arthur Health Department announced this week they would be receiving about 300 doses bound primarily for phase 1B but that they also be accepting names for a waiting list as they begin move to phase 1b.

Here's some more information from the Texas Department of State Health Services....

Texas continues to receive doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, and is distributing statewide to hospitals, pharmacies, local health departments, freestanding ERs and other clinics.

Who can get the vaccine now?

Front-line healthcare workers and residents at long-term care facilities (called Phase 1A) plus people over 65 or with a chronic medical condition that puts them at increased risk for severe illness from COVID‑19 (called Phase 1B) are currently eligible to receive the COVID‑19 vaccine.

Phase 1B recipients include:

  • People 65 years of age and older
  • People 16 years of age and older with at least one chronic medical condition that puts them at increased risk for severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19, such as but not limited to:
    • Cancer
    • Chronic kidney disease
    • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
    • Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies
    • Solid organ transplantation
    • Obesity and severe obesity (body mass index of 30 kg/m2 or higher)
    • Pregnancy
    • Sickle cell disease
    • Type 2 diabetes mellitus

If I’m eligible for vaccine now, how do I get one?

The week of January 11, Texas will direct most COVID-19 vaccines received to large sites or hubs around the state to vaccinate more than 100,000 people.

  • The goal of this plan is to provide more people the vaccine and a simpler way to sign up for an appointment.
  • Providers will focus on vaccinating areas and populations hardest hit by COVID-19.

If you are in Phase 1 and eligible to receive the vaccine, please check the COVID‑19 Vaccination Hub Providers page to find a hub near you and learn how to register.

Alternately, you can also check the websites of vaccine providers listed on the Texas COVID‑19 Vaccine Availability map to see if they have enough vaccine supply at this time.

Remember:

  • Do not show up at a hospital or clinic looking for vaccine.
  • Instead please check their website for information about vaccine availability.
  • Call only if the website doesn’t answer your questions.

Vaccine hubs aim to provide more vaccines quicker and easier. Texas vaccine supply is limited (but more arrives every week) and it will take time to vaccinate all.

After Phase 1, who gets the vaccine next and when?

Spring 2021 is the best estimate of when vaccine will be available for the general public, but that may change. It depends on vaccine production and how quickly other vaccines become available. The Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel (EVAP) is considering what criteria could be used for later stages of vaccine distribution. This webpage will be updated when those decisions are completed.

MORE | Texas DSHS FAQ pag

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