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State health officials finalize vaccination plan

Posted at 6:33 PM, Oct 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-23 19:33:10-04

TULSA, Okla. — The Oklahoma State Department of Health is finalizing its vaccine plan to keep you and your family safe.

State officials are calling this a “working draft,” but it details how the state would roll out a vaccine should one become available.

Jackie Shawnee, chief communications officer for the state health department, said the collaborative effort by local and state agencies have resulted in a plan to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

“We are organized and we have a strong network of partners and a strong network of providers ready to receive a vaccine,” Shawnee said.

State health officials said they are taking lessons learned from the 2009 H1N1 vaccination campaign to make improvements and identify gaps in preparedness. The plan will follow a “phased” approach to enroll a potential vaccine.

Phase one would include “priority groups” in case there is a limited supply; that would include long-term nursing homes, assisted living communities and its staff.

Phase two would include all vulnerable populations such as those underlying health issues, people over 65, frontline workers, and congregate locations, such as jails and homeless shelters.

Phase three will be teachers, students and school staff and phase four will be all remaining Oklahomans.

“We’ll be ready to adjust and pivot if needed when we find out the type of vaccines we’ll be receiving,” Shawnee said.

The immunization service is leading the technical components and provider-enrollment process, and the Oklahoma National Guard will lead the vaccine enrollment planning.

For more information about the Oklahoma State Department of Health response to COVID-19, click here.

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