More than 500,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses head to Texas

More than a half-million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine are coming to Texas in the first week of February, health officials said last week.

The CDC will ship 520,425 first doses to 344 providers in 166 counties across the state. That includes the 82 hubs, six of which are in Harris County. Also, 262 other providers will receive doses, including more than 100 federally-qualified health centers, community health centers and rural health clinics that typically provide primary care for underserved populations.

SEE ALSO: Where are the vaccine hubs in Texas

Texas Department of State Health Services officials said the increase in vaccine availability is due to two factors:

  • A 30% increase in the number of Moderna doses being provided to Texas by the federal government
  • A one-time return of 126,750 doses of the Pfizer vaccine that Texas was required to set aside for the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care program, a federal initiative

The federal program overestimated the amount of vaccines needed for nursing homes and assisted living facilities, so doses are being given back to the states, mostly to providers in counties, including Harris County, where allocations have been significantly less than their share of the population.

In addition to the first doses coming, the state is ordering 188,225 doses intended as the second dose for people first vaccinated a few weeks ago. The state is working with providers to make sure that they order the number of second doses needed at the appropriate time. People should be able to return to the same provider to receive their second dose of the vaccine.

Texas is currently vaccinating people in the Phase 1A and 1B groups. Phase 1A are front-line healthcare workers and residents at long-term care facilities. Phase 1B are people over 65 or people over 16 with a chronic medical condition that puts them at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

The video above is from a previous story.

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