Oregon Pharmacies Begin Taking COVID Vaccine Appointments

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Oregonians can make appointments to receive COVID vaccinations at select pharmacies. A new federal distribution program will begin sending out the vaccines beginning next week, reports the local paper on Feb. 10, 2021.

As part of Biden’s ambitious vaccine goal of shipping one million shots in Americans’ arms in his first 100 days in office, 65,000 pharmacies in the United States are due to receive COVID vaccines.

The target groups for this early stage of the COVID vaccine rollout are health care workers, teachers, and those living in nursing homes and other congregate care settings. As of this week, those 80 years and older are now eligible, and on February 15, Oregonians 75 and older will be allowed to receive COVID inoculations.

To fully vaccinate those 80 years and up would require 141,631 single doses, according to the United States Census Bureau’s 2019 report. Oregon’s health department would need to distribute another 89,578 single doses for those at least 75 years old. These numbers need to be doubled since the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require two doses.

COVIDDuring the initial phase, Oregon’s allotment of  13,000 doses will be distributed to Costco, Health Mart, Safeway, and Alberstons.

Oregon Health Authority Director Partick Allen indicates the COVID vaccines will be distributed to just over 130 pharmacies — about 100 shots each.

The majority of the doses will be sent to Safeway and Albertsons pharmacies — the two share common ownership. A company spokesperson said they expect to receive about 11,500 shots. Jill McGinnis states the COVID vaccines will be shipped to 115 locations — only four sites will not participate in this rollout.

Thirteen Costco pharmacies will be receiving vaccines; Albany, Aloha, Bend, Central Point, Clackamas, Eugene, Hillsboro, Portland, Roseburg, Salen, Tigard, Warrenton, and Wilsonville.

However, confusion remains as to when the COVID vaccines will be delivered. Trushar Patel, a pharmacist who owns three Health Mart locations, told the Oregonian he was still waiting for clarification from the CDC about when the doses would arrive.

Kristen Breland, a spokesperson for Health Mart states approximately nine other locations in the state. The pharmacies expect to receive their doses this week.

The spokesperson suggests people use their online scheduler. They recommend those who do not have access to the internet “seek help from friends and families so that pharmacies can avoid a flood of calls.”

Albertsons, Safeway, and Costco each set up online scheduling and can be reached at costco.com/covid-vaccine.html, safeway.com/COVID-19, and albertsons.com/COVID-19. Health Mart did not disclose their online address.

While each company prefers consumers use online scheduling first, each of them indicates:

Oregonians who don’t have access to the internet can call their pharmacies directly to try to schedule appointments.

Written by Cathy Milne-Ware

Sources:

The Oregonian: Select Oregon pharmacies to begin scheduling coronavirus vaccine appointments this week; by Jamie Goldberg
Suburban Stats: Population Demographics for Oregon 2020, 2019
NBC News: Biden pledged 150 million Covid vaccinations in 100 days. This is what the numbers say; by Joe Murphy

Images Courtesy of Mike Mozart’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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