RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Local health districts in the Richmond area (Chesterfield, Chickahominy, Henrico, and Richmond) will move into the next phase of COVID-19 vaccinations on Monday, January 18, according to Dr. Danny Avula, the head of Virginia’s COVID-19 distribution program.
The news came late Tuesday evening as health departments urgently move to increase vaccination output across the state.
Previously, health officials said Richmond and Henrico Health Districts would not enter phase 1b until February. Last week, though, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam urged health departments to move quickly and set a daily goal to increase vaccinations from 10,000 people to 25,000 people.
‘Phase 1b’ will prioritize essential frontline workers and people over the age of 75, according to the Virginia Department of Health (VDH).
Police officers, firefighters, K-12 teachers, correctional officers, and grocery store workers are among the top of the priority list. However, VDH said overlap of vaccination of groups is expected to ensure people in Phase 1b are vaccinated as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Across the country, federal officials are also working to increase vaccine output after a slower than expected start. Officials with Operation Warp Speed are recommending all people over 65 and with underlying conditions be granted access to the vaccine.
It’s unclear as of early Wednesday morning if Virginia will follow this recommendation.
To find out what vaccination phase you are in, you can take a quiz of VDH’s website.
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- A petition demanding vaccinations for Chesterfield teachers returning to county classrooms has nearly 4,000 signatures. It's the latest move inside the battle between some county parents and the school board.
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- Mayor Levar Stoney and Dr. Anthony Fauci spoke about how the federal government can help localities fight the COVID-19 outbreak during the United States Conference of Mayors' 89th annual Winter Meeting on Friday.
- Between 150 and 200 National Guard deployed to Washington, D.C., to provide security for President Joe Biden's inauguration have tested positive for the coronavirus, a U.S. official said on Friday.
- A bill — still alive in the Virginia House of Delegates — would allow parents or guardians the right to reject a Covid-19 vaccine for their child — based on their religious beliefs.
- From answering 9-1-1 calls and health department hotlines, to passing out meals to families in need — Henrico's school nurses have adapted to whatever is needed while schools are in virtual learning.
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