2021 Merch
Jun
24
2021
coronavirus

Gov. Mike DeWine outlined the state's initial vaccination distribution plan at a press briefing on Dec. 4.

DeWine outlines vaccine distribution plan

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Ohio is about 10 days away from receiving its first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines. Frontline health care workers, emergency medical personnel and residents and staff at nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other congregate living settings will be the first recipients of the vaccine, Gov. Mike DeWine announced at a press briefing on Friday, Dec. 4.

Those in nursing homes and assisted living facilities are especially vulnerable to COVID-19. In Ohio, 10% of all cases and over 50% of all deaths have occurred among individuals in these settings, according to state figures.

Ohio made decisions about “first priority” groups for the vaccine based on the goals of saving lives, covering the most vulnerable, slowing the spread of the virus and protecting health care workers, DeWine said. Not all individuals in these groups will be able to be vaccinated initially, however, as vaccine quantities are limited.

About 660,000 vaccine doses from two companies, Pfizer and Moderna, have been definitely or tentatively scheduled for shipment to Ohio this month along the following timeline:

  • On or around Dec. 15, Pfizer will ship 9,750 doses to some “prepositioned” Ohio hospitals and 88,725 doses to Walgreens and CVS for distribution to congregate care settings. 
  • On or around Dec. 22, Moderna will ship 201,000 doses of its vaccine to 98 hospitals and 108 health departments in the state. Hospitals will prioritize health care workers and other personnel who care for those with COVID-19, and local health departments will distribute to emergency medical personnel and home health care workers.
  • Also on or around Dec. 22, Pfizer is expected to ship 123,000 doses (a tentative number) to Walgreens and CVS for distribution to nursing home residents and staff.
  • A few days later, Pfizer is expected to ship an additional 148,000 doses (a tentative number) and Moderna 89,000 doses, again for distribution to identified priority groups.

Both companies’ vaccines are awaiting approval from the FDA. Two review meetings, one at the FDA involving non-governmental experts and one at the CDC, are scheduled just ahead of the Dec. 15 shipment. Based on extensive clinical trials that have shown 95% effectiveness for each vaccine with no significant adverse side effects, approval is widely expected. 

The new vaccines require two doses to be effective. DeWine clarified that the initial shipments would enable the vaccination of about 660,000 people, not half that number. The timeline assumes that a second dose will follow several weeks later to the individuals who received the first dose, DeWine said.

Joseph Gastaldo, head of infectious disease at Ohio Health, lauded the vaccine development at Friday’s briefing, calling it “the first major step to getting us back to a pre-COVID way of life.”

However, it could be many months before vaccinations are widespread enough to permit the full lifting of pandemic restrictions, experts have cautioned. DeWine has yet to specify plans for vaccinating the remaining 11 million Ohioans.

“Our goal is to get to the average 40-year-old in good health,” DeWine said of the scope of the overall vaccination plan, adding that he was “not sure” when vaccines would reach that lower-risk group. Essential workers, Ohioans over 65 and those with certain health conditions are among the groups that would likely be vaccinated in the coming months ahead of younger and healthier state residents.

The new vaccines are for adults only, and may not be safe for children. Trials of pediatric vaccines are just now getting underway, according to the New York Times.

Some resistance is expected to the vaccine itself, with about one-half of Ohioans expressing skepticism about COVID-19 vaccination, DeWine stated at the briefing. He added in response to a question that he would consider taking the vaccine publicly to encourage confidence in its safety.

Meanwhile, COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths continue to rise in Ohio. On Dec. 4, the state reported 10,114 new cases, 392 new hospitalizations and 129 additional deaths. The case number was the state’s third-highest ever for a single 24-hour period.

Ohio has now seen a total of 456,963 cases, 28,673 hospitalizations and 6,882 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

In the face of dramatic spread of the virus and escalating hospitalizations, DeWine said the additional measures recently put in place — including an overnight curfew and new mask enforcement in retail settings — were helpful, but not enough.

“They have not helped enough,” he said. “We’re clearly going to have to do more.” He did not specify what additional measures Ohio might take, however.

And in another part of Friday’s briefing, DeWine announced that the state would now follow the CDC’s modified quarantine guidance. Rather than require the full 14 days of quarantine, the new guidance specifies that people potentially exposed to the virus should quarantine for 10 days without a COVID-19 test and seven days with a negative test, provided they do not have symptoms of the illness.

While 14 days continues to be the recommended quarantine period, the shorter timeframes are now offered as options to encourage people to comply with quarantines and help slow the virus’ spread.

Quarantine “only works when we actually stick with it,” DeWine said.

A local update on COVID-19 in Yellow Springs and Greene County will appear in the Dec. 10 issue of the News.

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10 Responses to “DeWine outlines vaccine distribution plan”

  1. Alex Nilsson says:

    This governor could have been as historic as President George Washington. How? President Washington declined to be King. I’d like to think because he knew the danger of tyrannical, centralized leadership. This governor could have set an example for our nation today and for posterity by saying, “Other governors have taken actions similar to dictators around the world, but I love freedom and democracy. Therefore, just like President Washington, I’m sending this problem to the legislature and the democratic process, where it belongs.” Instead, we have the actions of a lifelong politician with limited vision.
    My website https://unabis.com/

  2. DSW says:

    The CDC according to the link provided by MM claims
    “Thimerosal is also used during the manufacturing process but is no longer an ingredient in any vaccine except multi-dose vials of the flu vaccine.”

    It does mention single dose vials are an alternative to those with Thimerosal allergies which are rare.

    {A friend of mine had experienced a reaction to it in eye drops many years ago, so I was particularly interested in the topic also.}

    Thanks for the info!

  3. Matt Minde says:

    Hello! The Pfiser and Moderna vaccines do not contain thiomersal (aka thimerosol). The FDA lists the ingredients in this document (https://www.fda.gov/media/144638/download). Several health organizations’ Q&A note that the “multi-dose vial of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine is preservative-free and does not contain thimerosal.” More information on the preservative can be found on the CDC’s website, https://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/concerns/thimerosal/index.html. Please note that the lone study done and published in the “Lancet” in 1990s that drew a correlation between thiomersal and autism was retracted by the journal in 2005. Find more detailed information here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5789217/ .

  4. JB Whyte says:

    Large parking lots would only work in weather permitting unless you utilize large industrial buildings or airplane hangers as a drive through. It was a good idea until I remembered it is Winter! D’oh…. We haven’t been inside a building other than our home since last March; so, going inside someplace to get the vaccine is intimidating to us. We’ll “double mask” for sure especially with these new variants now in Ohio. Stay well. Love.

  5. JB Whyte says:

    No car? There are agencies that provide transportation to seniors.

    I remember getting the polio vaccine as a small child and it was much smoother than what’s happening now. (We were lined up at tables in an school auditorium.)

  6. JB Whyte says:

    Is it just me or does this vaccine roll out seem a tad complicated to meet the demands of a crisis situation? I don’t know why people can’t show their ID and get the vaccine from their cars in a multi-line space like a large parking lot perhaps arranged alphabetically by last name. Computers could data entry who is getting what and when they need to come back for the second dose. Most people have a drivers license or a state ID. ??

  7. Bajean Foute says:

    Gov. DeWine has suggested that if a person misses their time slot for the vaccine they may not be able to get it any time soon. This is a concern for the 65 and over group who may be sick with something other than Covid-19 when the shot is offered. I don’t think it wise or fair to move them to the back of the line, but would rather them be able to take the shot when their condition improves enough that they may do so. They may have shingles or a flu/cold for example, which can be quite unpleasant for anyone and particularly the older population. There are many other illness with flare ups that might inhibit ones ability to acquire the vaccine at the time slot offered. I am hoping the governor will address this overlooked problem. If they qualified for the vaccine and missed it because of illness, it would seem fair to allow them to take it with any group when they are able. Certainly that should apply to front line workers also. Thank you.

  8. Royce Royce says:

    What the hell about the homeless population? No one is mentioning how they will get vaccinated and I haven’t heard diddly squat about what they’re doing to keep them off the streets in Springfield. Now they are saying things like immune compromised people should talk to their doctors first–do they know that many people don’t even have a doctor especially the homeless? There needs to be a lot more said about these problems. Also, if they’re expecting a post Christmas surge, is that really the time to vaccinate the most vulnerable over 65; my guess is they’ll be too darned afraid to venture out to get the shot.

  9. Brunlee L Wiltshire III says:

    Will a Covid vaccine contain thiomersal? How will we know? Is this part of the reluctance for some people to take it?

  10. Ben Hopewell Fine says:

    As long as there are people not being vaccinated I will continue to wear a mask in public and practice safety protocols until such time -if and when -the virus is either eradicated or vaccines are 100 percent effective or treatment immediate and 100 percent–however long it takes. We won’t engage in handshakes, hugs, or other than carry out at any restaurant; we may never feel safe at an indoor venue as before; and we will continue to mostly shop online. Our lives are very different and the changes sadden me somewhat, but we are old, higher risk adults in this household and we will learn to adapt within our own little “pod”….acquiring a taste for the rather long distance life on the internet is still challenging but we’ll adapt, eventually. Best wishes. Remain well. Love, Ben