In a COVID-19 press briefing by Gov. Mike Parson, it was announced by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services that over 200,000 vaccines will be delivered to Missouri by the end of the month.
Missouri is expected to see 51,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine by Dec. 12. Williams said there will be 21 freezer locations throughout the state to store the vaccine. Once the vaccine is at the location, the Centers for Disease Control said it has to be administered within 10 days.
DHSS Director Dr. Randall Williams said a week after the first batch of vaccines from Pfizer is delivered, an additional 65,000 vaccines will be distributed as well as an expected 105,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine, which does not need to be stored in medical freezers. It will be distributed to hospitals that aren’t one of the 21 freezer sites, which will make the vaccine more regionally accessible.
Missouri has around 350,000 health care workers and Williams said he expects all healthcare providers will be reached by the end of January.
“We think between our weekly allotments of both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine, we will be able to meet that goal of vaccinating all our healthcare providers here in Missouri by the end of January, and that will be receiving their first dose,” Williams said.
It is unclear as of now if Mosaic Life Care will be one of the 21 freezer locations. Mosaic officials said they will not give information on their contribution to the vaccine.
Debra Bradley, director of the St. Joseph Health Department, said she expects the vaccine will be ready for the public swiftly and she and the health department are ready for the distribution.
According to a someka.net study compiling hashtags and geotags on social media, Missouri was the second highest state regarding hesitancy for the vaccine.
Williams told News-Press NOW in a phone call that DHSS needs to continue to showcase the research for the safety and efficacy to Missourians to promote the vaccine. According to a previous News-Press NOW article, the DHSS has put aside around $600,000 for promotion of the vaccine.
“We do encourage people to get it because we do want to protect as many people in our community as we possibly can,” Bradley said. “This virus has raised havoc on everyone and I know everybody is ready to kind of go back to our normal life and the only way I feel to do that in a timely fashion is to be able to get enough people vaccinated.”
Two additional deaths associated with COVID-19 were announced Thursday which brings the total to 86 deaths in Buchanan County. Both individuals were men, one in his 80s and one in his 90s.