Wapello County Public Health continues vaccinating for Phase 1A, prepares for Phase 1B

Published: Jan. 14, 2021 at 6:00 AM CST
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OTTUMWA, Iowa (KYOU) - It’s been almost a month, and Wapello County Public Health has been giving the COVID-19 vaccine to health workers and long term care facilities.

Lynelle Diers,the director of Wapello County Public Health, says their vaccine strategy started where the virus was. Public health went “around to the clinics first that are doing testing of COVID patients and taking care of COVID patients. And as we concluded that, we’ve expanded out to other medical providers.”

For Phase 1B, their distribution plan will be similar to how they’ve been distributing it in Phase 1A - “We’ll take the vaccine where it needs to be given.”

Except for teachers and education staff. Clinics will be set up inside schools.

As for cost, while the vaccine at pharmacies may have a price attached, and insurance may be involved, Wapello County Public Health provides it for free. Diers says “we don’t hassle you as to what you’re insurance is. We’re just going to give you the vaccine.”

And while the vaccine does have side effects, generally after the second dose, Public Health gives out fact sheets with the vaccine. That way, side effects like fever or fatigue won’t be a surprise. The fact sheet explains background on the vaccine, its ingredients, and a list of all side effects.

“All vaccines come with side effects. It can be a variety, and if you start reading down with any other vaccine, you’re going to see the same reactions.

Diers believes the risk the vaccine’s side effects is much less than the risk of COVID-19.

“One or two days [of side effects] is better than contracting the virus and begin down for possibly up to months.”

Wapello County Public Health hopes to begin Phase 1B by the beginning of February.

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