January 12, 2020 - Governor Asa Hutchinson and the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) announced today the start day of Phase 1-B of the vaccination distribution plan will move up to Monday, January 18.
Currently, those in Phase 1-A are receiving the vaccine. Phase 1-A includes health care workers, residents and staff of long-term care facilities and EMS, police and firefighters who serve as first responders.
Regionally, the COVID-19 vaccination supply is still limited, so while Phase 1-B of vaccination begins on Jan. 18 with two groups: Arkansans who are 70 or older and those who work in education, including K-12, higher education and child care, not everyone in this category will be able to receive the vaccination on the 18th.
How can I get the vaccine?
Arkansans who are 70 and older can make an appointment at a community pharmacy beginning on Jan. 18. Vaccine clinics and events may also be available in your area through hospitals and health care providers. For those who work in education, the district, facility or college/university should determine how many doses are needed, and then schedule a vaccination clinic.
Appointments will be made with community pharmacies that have partnered with ADH, vaccination clinics and events. Not all of these appointment options will be available on the 18th, but as supply becomes more readily available, more access options will be available.
For a list of community pharmacy’s click here: community-based pharmacy.
Key points regarding the vaccine
Both the Moderna and the Pfizer vaccines require two doses administered three or four weeks apart, depending on which vaccine is used.
COVID-19 vaccines for children and adolescents will be developed later.
People who have already been infected with COVID-19 may still benefit from getting a vaccine. It is not yet known how long natural immunity to COVID-19 lasts. It’s also not yet known how long the immunity provided by the vaccine will last.
It will take months to receive enough supply to administer vaccinations to all the adults who want to receive it.
It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination.
COVID-19 can still spread even as vaccinations are administered in the state. Arkansans must be vigilant in continuing to wear face coverings, maintain physical distance around others, avoid gatherings with people from outside their household, and wash their hands frequently.