Submitted by San Juan County.
San Juan County Health and Community Services staff provided the first COVID vaccine to islanders on Wednesday, Dec. 30.
As per state and federal guidelines, initial distribution is limited to healthcare professionals, emergency responders, and long-term care facility staff and residents. This group is known as Phase 1a.
This first clinic was held on San Juan Island, and more than 50 individuals received the vaccine.
The Health and Community Services team will move to Orcas for a clinic on Dec. 31, and plans are underway for a Lopez clinic soon. Some Shaw Island first responders participated in the San Juan Island clinic.
Going forward, clinics will be held regularly on a rotating schedule until all Phase 1a individuals are vaccinated.
As guidelines for future phases are released by the Washington State Department of Health, and as vaccine supplies allow, additional groups of islanders will be eligible for the vaccine. The primary means of vaccine distribution in future phases will be via participating island medical providers and pharmacies.
For more details on specifics of the COVID vaccine and San Juan County’s current plans for distribution, review the recent FAQ at https://www.sanjuanco.com/DocumentCenter/View/21572/Hot-Topic-38-Vaccine-FAQ-20, or this media release announcing the first arrival of the vaccine in the islands, https://www.sanjuanco.com/DocumentCenter/View/21612/201224-SJC-Vaccine-Distro-Update.
San Juan County has a webpage devoted to COVID vaccine efforts, with links to other useful resources at https://www.sanjuanco.com/1737/COVID-Vaccine-Info.