The wait continues for coronavirus vaccine shipment in Willacy County

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The first shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine arrived in the Valley three weeks ago but Willacy County has yet to receive any doses.

Regional Medical Director Dr. Emilie Prot said it could be because there isn't a hospital in the county. 

"They have been trying to prioritized hospitals over small clinics," Dr. Prot said. "We have a clinic in Willacy and we applied to get 100 doses... So if clinics can give 1,000, they are trying to prioritize getting 1,000 doses out the door, compared to lower numbers."

Two locations in Willacy County have been approved for vaccine administration and about five other locations are in the process of becoming providers, according to Dr. Prot. 

Spokesperson for the Texas Department of State Health Services Lara Anton said that while the supply of the vaccine is limited, the COVID-19 Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel makes recommendations on the allocation of vaccines.

Alton said the priority has been to send the vaccine to providers, that indicated when they enrolled that they serve a large number of health care workers.

"As of week three [the] vaccine has been allocated to 199 counties." Anton said. "We are working to ensure that [the] vaccine will be sent to providers in every county.”

Watch the video for the full story. 

This story has been updated to include a statement from the Texas Department of State Health Services. 


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