All Texas adults will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine beginning March 29, according to a news release from the Texas Department of State Health Services.
DSHS expects vaccine supplies to increase next week, and providers in multiple parts of the state have made great strides in vaccinating individuals in current priority groups. In response, the state’s Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel recommended opening vaccinations to everyone who falls under the current FDA emergency use authorizations in order to protect as many people as possible.
“We are closing in on 10 million doses administered in Texas, and we want to keep up the momentum as the vaccine supply increases,” said Imelda Garcia, DSHS associate commissioner for laboratory and infectious disease services and the chair of the Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel. “As eligibility opens up, we are asking providers to continue to prioritize people who are most at risk of severe disease, hospitalization and death – such as older adults.”
DSHS directed vaccine providers to prioritize people 80 years old or older when scheduling appointments and accommodate anyone in that age group who presents for vaccination, whether or not they have an appointment.
DSHS will also launch a website next week allowing people to register for shots through select public health providers. The public will be able to enroll in the Texas Public Health Vaccine Scheduler to identify upcoming vaccine clinics hosted by DSHS or a participating local health department, and be notified when new clinics and appointments become available.
DSHS recommends online registration as the best option for most people, however, a toll-free number providing assistance in making appointments will be launched for those whom online registration is not an option.
To date, Texas has administered more than 9.3 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, equating to more than 6 million people with at least one dose and more than 3 million fully vaccinated.
For additional information, visit the DSHS Vaccine Information page at dshs.texas.gov.covidvaccine.
From Staff Reports • [email protected]