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Vaccinating elderly patients who don’t live in nursing homes

Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be rolled out to people living in nursing homes in the...
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be rolled out to people living in nursing homes in the coming days. But what about those who are 65 and older who don’t live in long-term health care facilities?(WBRC)
Updated: Dec. 18, 2020 at 8:55 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be rolled out to people living in nursing homes in the coming days.

But what about those who are 65 and older who don’t live in long-term health care facilities?

The Alabama Department of Public Health is still focused on vaccinating those in the Phase 1A priority group, but hopes to move forward with other vulnerable groups soon.

District Medical Officer for ADPH, Dr. Karen Landers, said the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will likely look over the vaccination phases this weekend and believes those 65 and older, will get the COVID-19 vaccine within the next several weeks.

“For our persons that are in the older age group that do not have the residency in long-term care, we strongly recommend that persons continue to be extremely careful about their interaction outside of their home and recognize that we do have a limited supply of vaccine,” Dr. Landers said.

She admits ADPH cannot provide all the COVID-19 vaccine in the community and will have to work with other health care facilities to ensure people who want the shot can get it.

“So, just we will continue to provide updates and information through our media releases and through our outreach to our community partners because we know that persons in the age group over 65 as well as persons with underlying health problems are very concerned about when their opportunity will be for vaccine,” Dr. Landers explained.

In the meantime, Dr. Landers recommends talking to your doctor to see if the COVID-19 vaccine is right for you.

“Persons should be very aware of the information and we have a vaccine page on our website. I would certainly urge people to have conversations about the vaccine and we will continue to push out information for specific groups as more vaccine becomes available,” Dr. Landers said.

Nursing home residents will be vaccinated through a federal program and will be managed through pharmacies working directly with nursing homes.

Those vaccinations are expected to start the week after next.

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