With the recent changes that broadened those eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccine to include those age 65 and older and the limited amount of vaccine available, Otter Tail County Public Health continues to prioritize all eligible groups in phase 1A to be offered the vaccine at this time.
Coordination is occurring with local health care partners to administer the COVID-19 vaccine as quickly as possible to prioritized groups, said a news release from Otter Tail County.
Perham Health says it is preparing to offer the vaccine to that age group as soon as supply allows.
“While there is very limited supply of vaccine to begin offering it to our patients in the 65 plus category, our team is ready to accommodate vaccination requests as soon as supply allows us to do so,” said Chuck Hofius, Perham Health CEO.
Perham Health will notify its patients through its My Chart patient information platform as to when they can make an appointment to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Patients without My Chart will be notified by mail.
Public Health is offering the COVID-19 vaccine to health care personnel in all priority groups within phase 1a. This does not include health care personnel who are 100% teleworkers and onsite personnel who can maintain a safe social distance of at least 6 feet apart while working. It does include staff and residents in assisted living facilities and other congregate care sites. In addition, the vaccine is being offered to outpatient and ambulatory health services staff who provide direct care.
While there may not be enough vaccine initially for everyone, the plan is to get everyone vaccinated. As of Jan. 14, state data shows that 1,860 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Otter Tail County, and 124 people have completed the vaccine series.
Plans to expand and offer COVID-19 vaccine to those identified in the governor’s recent announcement of those age 65 and older is actively occurring. Otter Tail County Public Health will continue to follow the guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health regarding the populations that will be targeted for the vaccine.
Public Health Director Jody Lien anticipates that all priority groups in phase 1A will have been offered the vaccine by the end of January. “We have scheduled a number of residential sites and phase 1A clinics in Otter Tail County in the coming weeks with the vaccine we’ve been allocated. As we receive more vaccine, we will move into the newly identified priority populations for vaccine administration. We are ready and plan to expand our vaccine clinics soon," Lien said in a news release.
At this time, vaccine administration clinics are scheduled and an invitation to register is sent to those eligible. As phases progress and expand and more people are eligible for the vaccine, information can be found here: ottertailcountymn.us/covid-19-vaccine/ There is no waiting list.
Public Heath and Perham recommend that everyone, including those who have been vaccinated, to continue to practice prevention measures like wearing a face mask, hand-washing and maintaining physical distancing.
For more information, please go to the CDC or Minnesota Department of Health website. Call Otter Tail County Public Health at 218-998-8320 or visit ottertailcountymn.us.