Eligible for the vaccine? Hospital group says don't hold your breath

A state hospital association issued a statement Friday sharing doubts about Gov. Kate Brown’s latest COVID-19 vaccine plan.

Posted: Jan 22, 2021 2:43 PM

LAKE OSWEGO, Ore. – The Oregon Association of Hospitals & Health Systems issued a statement Friday sharing doubts about Gov. Kate Brown’s latest COVID-19 vaccine plan.

CEO Becky Hultberg said they are concerned the supply of doses will not be able to meet the demand for the vaccine in all areas when eligibility opens to educators and older Oregonians.

“Since the state does not control the vaccine supply, Oregonians are being asked to take it on faith that the state can keep to the governor’s timeline,” Hultberg said.

The group urged Oregonians to keep in mind that not all hospitals will have enough doses of the vaccine to meet the demand. Some areas have not yet completed vaccinating the Phase 1A group, but starting next week, the majority of the supply will go to school staff, Hultberg said.

On Feb. 8, those 80 and older will be able to start getting vaccinated, with other age groups being phased in over time. Hultberg said this will compound the issue.

The official timeline released by the state sets unreasonable expectations and will create confusion for those who are trying to get vaccinated, the group said. It could be weeks or months until certain people on the priority list are able to be vaccinated, even if they are technically eligible, the statement adds.

Lastly, the group urged the community to not call hospitals, as they are doing the best they can with the supply they have and are under significant stress.

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