There are a lot of questions about the COVID-19 vaccines — which are safe, which are ethical, when will they be made available, and who will get them first.
The Virginia Healthcare & Hospitals Association (VHHA) are already fielding questions and comments surrounding the new vaccines, and while there are at least four of them to choose from, VHHA is doing its best to get as much information out to the public as possible.
In that spirit, VHHA made a helpful and short video about what the initial rollout is going to look like:
- In the first wave, 480,000 vaccines will be distributed.
- The first recipients will be health care workers as well as long-term care staff and residents.
- Shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine are being made now.
- After frontline healthcare workers, first responders — including police, fire, EMS, and other key individuals in vulnerable populations — will be allowed to take the vaccine.
- VHHA cautions that it may still be several months before the general population can take the COVID-19 vaccine.
- In the meantime, VHHA continues to recommend that individuals take personal responsibility for their own environment and situational awareness, including wearing a mask, limiting contact, and maintaining social distancing in public spaces.
At present, there is zero talk of a vaccination mandate either in Richmond or being recommended as a policy direction.
Given the scarcity of the vaccine at present, the real concern is prioritization among at-risk populations — including the elderly and minorities.
Thankfully, the large first wave seems as if it will be able to inoculate the vast majority of Virginia’s frontline doctors and health care staff, as well as make available the option of a vaccination to our law enforcement, firefighters, and emergency services personnel — key populations who are overtly exposed to COVID-19 in closed environment such as homes and businesses.