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The original item was published from 3/15/2021 12:54:28 PM to 4/7/2021 5:05:05 PM.

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Posted on: March 15, 2021

[ARCHIVED] People with High-Risk Medical Conditions in Group 4 Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccine March 17

John Herrera administering a shot to New Hope Fire Chief Charles Bowden

Governor Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. announced beginning on March 17, people in Group 4 who have a medical condition that puts them at higher risk of serious illness and people who live in certain congregate settings will be eligible for vaccination. The rest of Group 4, which includes other essential workers, will become eligible April 7. (See Deeper Dive)

People with high-risk medical conditions, people experiencing homelessness, and incarcerated people who have not been vaccinated will be eligible March 17. North Carolina plans to move to other essential workers and other people in close group living settings on April 7. 

The Orange County Health Department (OCHD) is ready for people in Group 4 to sign up to be vaccinated. To register with OCHD complete the Vaccine Interest Form (VIF) at https://redcap.link/OCHDvax or call (919) 913-8088. The phone line is operated daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Spanish and other languages available. Group 4 registrants will be placed on a waitlist and will receive a notice as soon as an appointment becomes available.  

More than 1.1 million North Carolinians have been fully vaccinated as the state works with local health departments and providers to distribute this vaccine quickly and equitably. While supply is still limited, the increased federal allocation of doses is helping providers administer vaccines to more people. 

In Orange County, 25,403 people, or 17.1% of the population, is fully vaccinated. OCHD has administered 5,868 first doses and 3,553 second doses. The Orange County Health Department is just one of several vaccinators available. The NCDHHS maintains a complete list of vaccinators at www.myspot.nc.gov. Community members may also call (888) 892-1162 to find a vaccine location. Spanish and other languages available. 

“We are very fortunate to now have three tested, safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines that keep people out of the hospital and prevent death from this virus,” said Secretary Cohen. “With improving supplies, North Carolina can get more people vaccinated sooner and meet our goals to provide equitable access to vaccinations in every community in the state.” 

North Carolina has continued to emphasize equity in the vaccine distribution process. In the last four weeks, more than 20 percent of the state’s first doses have been administered to Black North Carolinians. Bloomberg News recognized North Carolina as the leader in the nation for reporting demographic data on who has been vaccinated down to the county level.

A federally supported community vaccination center opened this week in Greensboro. This site — one of just 18 sites nationally — will help the state continue its effort to reach more marginalized and underserved communities. The federal government will provide the center’s vaccine supply, which is in addition to North Carolina’s weekly allotment from the Centers for Disease Control. The site will operate seven days a week with the capacity to provide up to 3,000 vaccinations per day, with options for drive-thru service in the parking lot and walk-in service.

Detailed information about each vaccine group is online at YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov (English) or vacunate.nc.gov (Spanish). North Carolinians can find vaccine providers in their community through the NCDHHS online tool, Find a Vaccine Location. The COVID-19 vaccine help center is available to answer vaccine questions at 888-675-4567. 

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