More residents became eligible to receive a covid-19 vaccination on Thursday as the Mohave County Public Health Department announced that it has entered Phase 1B of the distribution plan.
Although moving forward through the phases, the health department said it will be sub-prioritizing distribution within the 1B population due to limited vaccine availability nationwide. The Public Health Department said it will follow guidelines from the Arizona Vaccine Antiviral Prioritization Advisory Committee in prioritizing 1B populations. The new phase will start by vaccinating protective service occupations first, followed by adults 75 and older, then education and childcare workers, followed by essential services/critical industry workers, and finally adults with risk conditions in congregate settings.
The first group in 1B to be vaccinated - protective services occupations - includes law enforcement, corrections officers, firefighters and other emergency response staff.
In the release, the health department said it does not know how long the 1B category will take to complete, but it hopes to be able to start administering vaccines to those 75 and older late next week. The health department also promised to announce more specific dates and timelines for Phase 1B as it comes available.
Winter visitors, if they are in the appropriate category, will be able to be vaccinated within Mohave County. The health department advises that those in the 1B population should contact a vaccine provider to schedule an appointment if they wish to receive the vaccine. The department also asks that people who are not in the 1B population refrain from contacting providers at this time.
At least four counties in Arizona have now moved into Phase 1B. The Arizona Department of Health Services website still listed Mohave County in Phase 1A on Thursday, but it’s website shows Apache, Gila and Pinal counties have all moved on to 1B.