State officials are providing more data about where exactly the state’s 1,166,600 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have gone — six weeks since the first shipments of the vaccine arrived in the Commonwealth.
About 60,400 of those doses have gone to hospitals, health departments and other health providers in Charlottesville and the counties of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson, which comprise the Blue Ridge Health District.
The Virginia Department of Health updated the public vaccine dashboard Wednesday during Gov. Ralph Northam’s press conference with the additional information. Statewide, hospitals have received nearly 60% of the state’s doses.
Northam said at the press conference that the state is going to play a larger role in the vaccination program amid frustration about the process thus far.
The Blue Ridge Health District has received the third-most doses of any health district in the state — only behind Norfolk and Fairfax. About 53,900 doses have been shipped to nearby Central Shenandoah Health District.
As of Wednesday, 29,543 doses have been administered within the district and 3,213 people have been fully vaccinated. However, figuring out how much of the supply remains and where it is is complicated. The state’s dashboard doesn’t say how many of the doses are for the first or second shots. Providers automatically receive the necessary supplies for the required second doses.
The updated dashboard comes after the state started basing dose allocations based on population, rather than what each health department or hospital system requests. This week, the Blue Ridge Health District will get 2,950 doses — all of which are going to the health department.
Northam said at the press conference that hospitals have been told to shift any unused first doses to other priority groups. About 28% of the state’s doses are for second shots and hospitals have received most of them.
University of Virginia Medical Center officials said last Friday that the hospital had received 25,075 first doses. It’s not clear if all of those shots would show as doses administered in the health district. That’s because not all of the employees at the medical center live in the health district.
The state reports doses administered by locality of residence.
UVa and Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital received the first shipment of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 14 and started vaccinating staff soon afterward.
Officials with Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital are not disclosing which doses went to which specific hospitals. The system overall has administered 31,601 doses, a spokesman said, and 48% of all Sentara team members have received the vaccine.
Martha Jefferson is working with the health district and using its vaccine stock to vaccinate healthcare workers in the first priority group.
Some of the district’s 2,950 doses will go toward school staff. The Albemarle and Charlottesville school divisions are hosting a three-day, invitation-only vaccination clinic starting tomorrow at Charlottesville High School. That clinic is focused on staff members working in-person at a school building, those who have not been able to schedule an appointment or those who have one after Feb. 7, according to an employee announcement.
Employees from both school divisions have volunteered to help run the clinic.
In the announcement, Albemarle school officials said about 75% of employees who said they want to receive the vaccine have been able to secure an appointment.
Beth Cheuk, spokeswoman for the city school division, said they were working to figure out how many city employees have been able to make appointments.
Meanwhile, local vaccination plans continue to face technology glitches and other challenges.
UVa Health said on social media Tuesday night that some employees who are part of UVa’s academic division signed up for vaccine appointments, even though they are not currently eligible, and are asking them to cancel those appointments.
“Employees who were eligible received emails inviting them to sign up,” UVa Health spokesman Eric Swensen said. “Unfortunately, misinformation and links have circulated on social media, and some UVa students, faculty and staff who are in phase 1c logged into our scheduling system and booked appointments. When employees arrive for vaccination, we ask them to show their employee ID badges and verify where they work. We don’t give the vaccine if the person doesn¹t work for UVa Health.”
On social media, UVa Health clarified that its vaccine scheduling system wasn’t created to monitor for ineligible appointments and can be used by anyone with a UVa login.
“Nursing, medical and affiliated training program students were the only students eligible for vaccination during Phase 1a,” according to social media posts. “Academic students were repeatedly informed that they were not eligible for vaccination during this phase. Nonetheless, we have learned from social media posts that some UVa students ignored those restrictions and scheduled appointments anyway. They also shared registration links and invited their friends to sign up.”
Because of the limited vaccine doses, the state created priority groups — 1a, 1b and 1c — to outline who should receive the vaccine first. Currently, shots are open to healthcare workers, long-term care facilities, some essential workers, people 65 and older and anyone 16 or older who has an underlying medical condition.
To see which priority group you are in, go to vdh.virginia.gov/covid-19-vaccine.