Mineral County on COVID vaccine: No doses being wasted
By Liz Beavers
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - The Mineral County Health Department has thus far distributed 421 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with 55 of those being the second-round “boost” doses required as part of the regimen.
According to health department administrator A.Jay Root, 105 of those 421 doses were administered to first responders in the county, and 261 have been administered through clinics for Mineral County residents age 80 and over.
And all this has been accomplished as health department employees themselves have been recovering from the virus and/or quarantine.
With Gov. Jim Justice’s announcement Wednesday that West Virginia is now expanding its vaccine distribution to state residents age 70 and over, Root expects to be even busier … as soon as they receive the vaccine to distribute.
Despite stories that have surfaced from various locations across the country, Root said there has been no vaccine go unused in Mineral County.
“It comes in the door and it goes out the door,” Root said, explaining that as soon as the health department receives more vaccine they go to the next people on the list for distribution.
“We don’t have any left over,” he said. “If someone doesn’t show up, we go to the next person on the list.”
In addition to vaccine distribution in Mineral County, Root has been working with neighboring counties to set up regional clinics. One is scheduled for Thursday at the Moorefield Armory to cover Mineral, Hampshire, Hardy and Grant counties, but the 500 slots are already filled.
“We’re working regionally and we’re working locally to get this vaccine out,” he said.
Root also said the response from the public in receiving the vaccine has been positive, and there have been “no serious adverse reactions reported” to date.
Also locally, both Med-a-Save and Wahlgreen’s pharmacies have partnered with the state to help distribute the vaccine and have been working with local healthcare workers, nursing homes, and the school system.
Residents age 70 and over wishing to be added to the list o receive the vaccine can call the health department at 304-788-1321.
As of Tuesday, there were 195 positive COVID-19 cases in Mineral County, with 52 probable cases.
Mineral County has had a total of 2,157 positives since the start of the pandemic, with 1,930 of those having recovered. Seventy Mineral County residents have died as a result of virus-related illness.