Ottawa County residents have been clamoring to be vaccinated in the battle to stop the spread of Covid-19, but local officials confirm that it may take months just to provide the vaccine to those 65 and older.
Meanwhile, the county death total on Friday reached 49, with 38 of the 49 deaths claiming residents in long term care facilities.
Magruder Hospital officials reported that the supply of the vaccine does not come close to satisfying demand, and reiterated that all doses received— 1,900 through Friday — have been administered only to county residents. Ottawa County has received 500 doses per week over the lasts two weeks, with Magruder Hospital receiving 200 per week.
The number of Covid-19 cases in the county had risen to 3,022 on Friday.
Ohio has been allocated 8.6 million doses per week, and Region 1, an 18-county area that includes Ottawa County, gets 11,800 does. The state allocation reportedly may increase to 10 million soon.
Gov. Mike DeWine reported that Ohio school teachers and staff may soon begin receiving the vaccine, including K-12 schools, including public, private schools, which is necessary for in-person learning.
DeWine has made it a goal of returning to in-person learning either full-time or in a hybrid model by March 1. In order to do this, the governor identified teachers and school personnel as Phase 1B recipients as part of the Ohio Covid-19 Vaccination program.
“Vaccine is incredibly scarce, and we simply don’t have enough to vaccinate everyone at the same time. This will be a rolling process, just like it has been during other vaccination phases, with a goal of administering all first doses by March 1st,” said DeWine. “This rollout schedule is a heavy logistical lift that aims to ensure the maximum number of people can be vaccinated in the shortest amount of time.”
The plan also makes the process as simple as possible for staff to be vaccinated and is organized to allow most K-12 staff in a county to be vaccinated within seven days of their assigned vaccination start date. For the limited number of counties where vaccinations will take place over multiple weeks, local leaders will make the logistical and scheduling decisions.
Eligible recipients may learn more about the locations and times of the vaccination sites from their administrators. Vaccinations could begin Monday, Feb. 1.