For third week, Jackson County Health Department doesn’t get any COVID-19 vaccines from state

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — In Missouri, officials say more than 698,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered. According to state officials, that’s more than 8% of the population that’s been vaccinated.

But at the Jackson County Health Department, Assistant Director Ray Dlugolecki said they haven’t received any shots from the state. 

“As of today, this is the third week that we have not received what we what we have requested,” Dlugolecki said Monday.  

Dlugolecki said the department is set up to put up to 7,500 shots in arms each week, but they have no supply.  

“We know that in certain areas of the state, there are more people who are being disproportionately impacted,” Dlugolecki said. “So the question is, what are we going to do about it? How are we going to be intentional about getting vaccine to those who need it?” 

Even though the vaccine has not made it to the Jackson County Health Department, a spokeswoman from the Governor’s Office said 9,500 doses were given in Kansas City last week alone.

She went on to write in a statement: “Individual county health departments may or may not receive shipments in a given week, but vaccines are arriving in those areas in significant numbers, despite limited supply.” 

Missouri plans for least 75,000 doses every week. FOX4 learned 8% goes to federally qualified health centers, 8% goes to local public health agencies, 8% to all other community providers, 23% for state mass vaccination clinics and 53% goes to high-throughput health care. 

Missouri has released its vaccine navigator to help people find where they can get a shot and when. But the state says the tool may not keep track of every event, so they encourage you to check with your local health department, too.

“What we hope to see is just little bit more consolidation of all of these different forms and access points,” Dlugolecki said. “So that it really just makes it makes it easy on people to, you know, go to one spot and find out where vaccine might be available to them.” 

Dlugolecki said the Jackson County Health Department will keep requesting shipments from the state while working to improve the framework for when the vaccines arrive. 

“We’re put in these difficult positions to deal with these difficult situations,” Dlugolecki said. “We need to be strategic; we need to be intentional about getting vaccine to where it actually needs to go.” 

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