ROANOKE, Va. – Before the year’s end, Virginia hopes to have nearly all the COVID-19 vaccine it needs to fully vaccinate the state’s two top-priority groups.
The state is preparing to receive an estimated total of 480,000 doses of vaccine from Pfizer and Moderna, according to the Virginia Department of Health.
Officials said that the first doses will be given to health care personnel and long-term care facility residents.
VDH estimates there are up to 500,000 members of these two groups.
“Vaccine will be provided to Virginians in a way that is fair, ethical, and transparent,” said Virginia State Health Commissioner Dr. Norm Oliver. “We will focus initially on the groups that have been most at risk for severe illness from COVID-19 infections and those whose work puts them at greatest risk of contracting COVID-19 infections.”
Both vaccines require two doses, and VDH expects to receive the second doses for the 480,000 at the appropriate time it’s needed.
Oliver said that as more vaccine supply becomes available over time, the more Virginians will be able to get vaccinated.
The first shipment, containing 72,150 doses of vaccines, is expected to be received from Pfizer in mid-December with subsequent weekly shipping to follow.
On Wednesday, Gov. Ralph Northam detailed Virginia’s three-phased plan to distribute the vaccine.
After health care personnel and long-term care facility residents will be Phase II, which includes critical infrastructure staff, adults with high-risk medical conditions and adults ages 65 and older.
Lastly, in Phase III, the vaccine will be available for the general public.
The video below is of Northam detailing Virginia’s COVID-19 distribution plan: