As we gear up to move into the next phases and tiers of vaccine doses, Riverside County Public Health officials are answering some common questions you might have about the vaccine.
NBC Palm Springs breaks down what we are learning so far. Riverside County is currently vaccinating those listed in phase 1-A.
“It’s all of our frontline healthcare workers, so people who work in general acute care hospitals, people who work in skilled nursing facilities and long term care facilities. our folks that are in-home supportive services, caregivers. also, people who work in mortuaries,” said Kim Saruwatari, Director of Public Health in Riverside County.
With many still wondering when it will be their turn.
“It’s all based on how many vaccines we have available and that will determine how quickly we can move through those phases. my best guess at this point is that it will take us a few months to get through the phases and the general public should have the ability to get vaccinated in late spring or early summer,” added Saruwatari.
Other health experts saying pharmacies will need help, and vaccine doses have to be given in large amounts to get where we need to be.
“The pharmacy chains and others are just not adequate to do the full job of vaccinating 2-3 million Americans a day which is where we have to get to, to get the three-quarters of the population vaccinated by the end of the summer,” said Dr. Peter Hotez, Professor & Dean of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.
And when asked if the vaccine is safe, experts say it is, explaining at this point, it may be our only option.
“It has gone through rigorous clinical trials with tens of thousands of people that have been included in both of the Pfizer the Moderna vaccine. the data from the clinical trials have been reviewed by experts with the food and drug administration, with the advisory committee on immunization practices,” said Saruwatari.
“We failed to implement any kind of covid-19 containment strategy, the white house, this current white house has left us no other alternative at this point but to vaccinate our way out of it pretty much, and that’s where we have to emphasis otherwise the numbers, the deaths will continue to accelerate,” added Dr. Hotez.