Editor’s note: After about 30 minutes, all current appointment times for the Jan. 29 clinic were filled. Douglas County leaders will make an announcement when more times are available — if they receive additional doses for that clinic. Read more below about how to get notified for future vaccine clinics.
LAWRENCE, Kan. — Douglas County leaders have released plans to start vaccinating hundreds of residents now that Kansas is entering Phase 2 of its COVID-19 vaccine plan.
Gov. Laura Kelly plans to formally make the Phase 2 announcement Thursday. It means people 65 and older, those in certain congregate settings and high-contact critical workers will be eligible for the vaccine.
Douglas County leaders announced Wednesday night that they will start their first public vaccine clinic on Friday, Jan. 29, at the Douglas County Fairgrounds. It will be limited to those 65 and older.
It will be a drive-thru vaccination clinic at the fairgrounds’ Community Indoor Arena and is by appointment only.
Douglas County residents 65 and older can schedule an appointment online and enter the code “2ndphase1stdose” to secure their spot.
One appointment per person 65 and older is needed, and when you book a time, you will receive detailed instructions on what to bring to your appointment.
There will be about 500 appointments throughout the day. County leaders said in a statement that if they receive more vaccine doses before Jan. 29, they will add appointment times and announce when they are available.
“This is all dependent on the availability of doses of the vaccine. Given the large population who would qualify under Phase 2, we expect it will take several weeks to vaccinate everyone in this phase, so we continue to ask for patience from our community members,” Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health Director Dan Partridge said.
“That said, we are excited to make progress on vaccinating those health care workers and others who qualify under Phase 1 and proceed into Phase 2, including to begin to vaccinate those 65 and older who are most vulnerable to COVID-19.”
For those who aren’t able to schedule an appointment as part of the first Phase 2 open clinic on Jan. 29, register for alerts at dgcoks.org/emalerts to be notified of enrollment for future clinics.
“There is a population of tens of thousands to vaccinate in Phase 2, so it will take several weeks to vaccinate members of this group,” said Charlie Bryan, chair of the Vaccination Planning Unit of Unified Command. “Because residents 65 and older are more likely to experience higher-risk complications of COVID-19, we are starting with vaccinating this group in Phase 2 in our community.”
For other people in Phase 2, Douglas County leaders haven’t forgotten about you. They are also working with organizations who employ critical workers, such as teachers, to determine how to deliver vaccinations to these groups when more doses are available.
Here’s a better breakdown of all the groups that fall under Kansas’ Phase 2:
- Persons aged 65 and older
- High-contact critical workers necessary to maintain systems, assets, and activities that are vital to the state security, the economy or public health, or who interact with large numbers of contacts and job-related COVID-19 exposure. COVID-19 risk is associated with the likelihood of infecting oneself or spreading the virus. Factors that increase risk include proximity, type of contact, duration of contacts and challenges to implement protective measures. This includes:
- Firefighters, police officers, first responders, and correction officers
- Grocery store workers and food services
- K-12 and childcare workers, including teachers, custodians, drivers and other staff
- Food processing, including meat processing plants
- Large-scale aviation manufacturing plants
- Transportation workers
- Workers in retail, agriculture, supply of critical services or materials for COVID-19 response, the U.S. Postal Service, and Department of motor vehicles
- Those living or working in licensed congregate settings and other special care or congregate environments where social distancing is not possible, including:
- Homeless shelters
- Congregate childcare institutions
- Emergency shelters or safe houses
- Corrections facilities
- Behavioral health institutions