Danny Wilson, respiratory therapist, receives a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for COVID-19 at Madison Memorial Hospital in Rexburg, Idaho on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. (John Roark/The Idaho Post-Register via AP)
POCATELLO – The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare implemented an email system to let people know when it’s their time to get a COVID vaccination.
Health and Welfare recently published an estimated timeline for vaccine availability and developed an Email Alert System to inform members of the public who choose to be vaccinated when it is available. The method will be based on the supply and the number of people in priority groups who choose to be vaccinated.
Participants must go online and fill out a form to be eligible.
Southeastern Idaho Public Health hotline has been bombarded with phone calls about the COVID-19 vaccine, with the number one question being when the vaccine is going to be available for their priority group.
“There is a form located on the SIPH’s website, www.siphidaho.org , and will take the guess work out of the process,” a press release said.
The form emphasizes the vaccine supply is still extremely limited in Southeast Idaho and they are working with their suppliers across their local healthcare delivery system to distribute it as quickly as possible. They plan to work through the priority populations as identified by the state.
“This process doesn’t sign the participant up to receive the vaccine but is a mechanism that we will use to email the participants about options when the vaccine is available for their priority group,” said Maggie Mann, SIPH District Director. “Vaccine supply continues to be extremely limited in Southeast Idaho.
“We are working with our partners across our local healthcare delivery system to distribute the vaccine as quickly as possible, working through the priority populations identified by the State of Idaho. We are mandated to follow these priority groups as closely as possible.”
SIPH said on their online form that as soon as the vaccine becomes more available, they plan to form a public health nurse “strike team” to vaccinate priority groups and schedule appointments for COVID inoculations.
“This alert system gives the community a way to take action and the vaccine provides hope, but we are not in the clear yet,” said Mann. “We are in the midst of a challenging winter. Please make the choice to wear a mask when interacting with others.
“It’s a simple choice to protect our community, until we can vaccinate enough people to reduce the impact of this virus. Practice 6 feet social distancing. Wash your hands frequently and stay home if you are sick. There is light at the end of the tunnel.”
There are also plans for drive-through and walk-in clinics to give mass vaccinations.
There have been 12,865 total cases of COVID-19 in Southeast Idaho, 96 new cases confirmed and probable with 12,176 recovered and 140 deaths according to SIPH.
SIPH has a call center to field questions from the community and is open Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. You can reach the hotline at (208) 234-5875.
For Southeast Idaho specific information about the novel coronavirus, visit https://siphidaho.org/coronavirus.php. For Idaho-specific information about the novel coronavirus, visit https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/.
Interested people can join SIPH Monday-Friday at 11 am for Facebook Live at https://facebook.com/siphidaho.