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The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announced on January 19 that adults 65 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine beginning on Monday, January 25. The Washburn County Health Department is ordering vaccine in response to the announcement.

“Wisconsin receives approximately 70,000 first-dose vaccines per week from the federal government to be distributed to vaccinators throughout the state,” the health department said. “We are not guaranteed the number of doses we request from the State and we will not know how much of the requested amount of vaccine we will receive until Monday.

“We will release information on when and where vaccine clinics for adults 65 and older would take place as well as information on scheduling vaccination starting on Monday, Jan. 25, based on the amount of vaccine we are allotted,” the department said.

Groups eligible for vaccination as of January 25 include:

> Phase 1A – frontline health care workers.

> Phase 1A – long-term care residents.

> Phase 1B – police and fire personnel.

> Phase 1B – adults 65 years and older.

Additional Phase 1B eligibility groups will be voted on by the State Disaster Medical Advisory Committee (SDMAC) later this week.

“Vaccination will take time,” the health department advised. “Washburn County businesses and residents should continue taking the following steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

> Avoid social gatherings with anyone other than people who live in your home, as much as possible.

> Avoid large gatherings.

> Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet from people who do not live together.

> Use face masks or coverings when in public places.

> Frequently wash hands with soap and water, or sanitize with hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are unavailable.

> If experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 (https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/symptoms.htm), isolate yourself as much as possible and get tested. Call a hospital or medical provider before visiting in-person.

> Businesses should follow the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s guidelines for reopening (https://wedc.org/reopen-guidelines/)

To register for the vaccines: https://www.washburncodisaster.org/covid-19

(Copyright © 2021 APG Media)

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