Texas to prioritize COVID-19 vaccine for large vaccination hubs

Coronavirus

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texas will direct most of the COVID-19 vaccine it received from the federal government to large providers, the Department of State Health Services announced in a release Thursday.

These hubs must be able to vaccinate more than 100,000 people and will provide the vaccine to people who are at greater risks of hospitalization and death, as well as front-line health care workers. That includes those in groups 1A and 1B.

DSHS determines the provider’s capacity to operate large community vaccination sites. It will publish a list of vaccine hub Sunday. There will be a “simpler” way to sign up for an appointment, it said, but didn’t provide details beyond that each provide must have a registration phone number and website.

Additional vaccine will be distributed to smaller providers in other parts of the state.

Overall, large and small providers combined will receive a total of about 200,000 doses of the vaccine next week. That will be the last week the state is required to reserve doses to vaccinate residents and staff of long-term care facilities under the federal pharmacy-LTC partnership.

Because the number of doses are limited, partially because manufacturers have capacity limitations, remains limited, it will take time for Texas to receive enough vaccine for people in the priority populations. Supply is expected to increase in coming months and additional vaccines are in clinical trials before being authorized by the Food and Drug Administration.

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