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State sends out invites to 11,500 seniors for weekend vaccinations

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The state will start mass vaccinations for those 65 and older this weekend.
The state will start mass vaccinations for those 65 and older this weekend.

 

Using requests sent into the state’s new vaccination registration system, the Delaware Division of Public Health Thursday invited 11,500 seniors to have a vaccination this week in Delaware City or Georgetown.

Invitations when to the highest priority people based on age and health conditions that put them at greater risk for being infected by or dying from COVID-19.

About 200,000 Delawareans are eligible for vaccination in Phase 1B, which will focus heavily on vaccinating those 65 and older first.

More than 56,000 registered for the chance to be vaccinated Wednesday, the first day the registration system opened. As of 3 p.m. Thursday, 73,630 requests have been made.

The vaccination events Friday, Saturday and Sunday in Delaware City, and Saturday and Sunday in Georgetown are by appointment only. If you did not get an invitation to make an appointment, you will not be allowed to have a shot.

 

The Saturday and Sunday events will also serve 2,000 Phase 1A health care personnel who have appropriate documentation from their employer or DPH.

That makes a total of 13,500 planned vaccinations for the weekend. Any person without an appointment or appropriate documentation will be turned away.

Each email that invited someone to make an appointment contains an individualized link and instructions. They cannot be transferred to another person. The letter may said: “Your organization or employer designated you in a priority group for vaccination” because they are part of a national system.  This is not a scam. the health officials said.

Those who schedule an appointment receive a confirmation email with a QR code they can print or show on a mobile device at the vaccination event, eliminating the need to fill out an immunization reporting record form. This pre-submitted information will also expedite reporting to the DelVAX system used to track vaccinations.

Some seniors without computer access who used the vaccine call center to register were called back Thursday to arrange the appointment.

 

The registration system will only send people to state vaccinations. State health officials urged anyone on the list who can get a vaccine from a pharmacy, employer or a medical provider to take it.

Also on Thursday, a list of pharmacies and medical providers accepting public requests for vaccination was added to http://de.gov/covidvaccine by following the link “Find Where to Get Vaccinated.”

Vaccines available through pharmacy stores and medical providers are currently only for persons 65 and older. Pharmacies are asking those 65 and older to schedule an appointment using their online systems. They are not accepting appointment requests by walk-in or over the phone.

Some updates were made to the state registration system Wednesday evening based on user feedback and questions, including indicators when users had not filled out required fields, and placing the requester’s first and last names in acknowledgement emails.

Individuals who successfully submitted a request for vaccination should check their spam or junk folders for the automated confirmation email they will receive from the VAMS system.

 

Those coming to the appointments should bring their appointment confirmation with QR code or documentation of Phase 1A status, along with a photo ID.

Those getting vaccine shots are reminded to dress so that the upper arm can be exposed easily without having to get out of vehicle to remove a coat or shirt.

One caveat: If someone has received a flu, shingles or other vaccination within the last 14 days, they cannot receive the COVID-19 vaccine until 14 days have passed.

As of midnight Wednesday, Jan. 20, 54,760 administered doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been reported to the state’s immunization information system.

To register for a vaccine online, go to https://vaccinerequest.delaware.gov/s/?language=en_US or call  1-833-643-1715.

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