KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Gov. Mike Parson is calling on the National Guard to help get Missourians vaccinated.
Missouri is now in Phase 1B-Tier 2 in its vaccination process, which includes anyone age 65 and older, high-risk individuals, and those with serious illnesses or at risk of a serious illness like cancer heart and lung conditions, severe obesity and more. Read the full eligibility list here.
In this new phase, about 2.5 million Missourians are eligible to be vaccinated. To meet that large number, Parson called on the National Guard to help.
“We are meeting every day to see how we’re going to meet that demand,” the governor said. “We know when we move into that next level that we’re talking into the millions.”
There will be a mass vaccination team assigned to each of Missouri’s nine highway patrol regions. Each team will have the capability to administer more than 2,000 doses a day.
Patrick Salle, CEO of Vibrant Health KC, said increasing access to the vaccine is vital.
“Then we can send that text message out and say contact us and let’s get you scheduled,” he said. “It’s just going to be a great day because we’re starting to get it in the arms of people that are at risk.”
The more Missourians that get vaccinated, the closer we are to herd immunity.
“When that occurs, then you can pull back a bit on the public health measures. But until that occurs, they’re still going to be a lot of virus circulating in the community,” White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said.
This weekend, the first mass vaccination site is expected to open in Southeast Missouri.
Officials have not released any details about sites in the Kansas City area. Parson said locations, dates and more details for sites in Missouri’s other eight regions will be released later this month.