PHOENIX, AZ (3TV / CBS 5) – AARP State Director Dana Kennedy told the Arizona family she knows how important this potential booster vaccine is for Arizona seniors, but she worried about how it will get to them, which is why she sent a letter to the state health department three days ago.
In that letter, Kennedy writes, “The initial vaccine deployment was not without challenges.” She said many older Arizonans couldn’t access or navigate the online system and those confined to their homes were left without a life-saving vaccine for weeks. The letter sent on Tuesday urges the state health department to come up with a comprehensive plan to roll out the booster injections.
It includes educating the public for online appointments or allowing them to make appointments over the phone. They also want to see vaccines delivered or transport people to vaccination sites who cannot leave their homes or facilities.
“People are starting to get COVID in long-term care facilities, so you can have new residents and remember these people can’t go out and get vaccinated, so we need to make sure we do it for them. vaccinate, so we want to make sure the state has a plan, especially for those 65 and over, for long-term care facilities, ”Kennedy said.
Dr Ross Goldberg agrees that Arizona’s most vulnerable need these injections. “It makes sense if there is a worry of a bit of a decline 6 to 8 months after you get your shots,” Dr. Goldberg said. “You see a more aggressive version of the virus now, you know again you put 1 and 1 together, you get 2, it makes sense to get that extra layer of protection for those who are most at risk.”
The Arizona family contacted the Arizona Department of Health Services Friday evening after receiving the letter from the AARP. A spokesperson for the Department of Health said they had not received the letter and responded to the letter the Arizona family sent them.
There is an adequate supply of Pfizer vaccine throughout Arizona, and most people 65 years of age and older can simply go to a pharmacy, doctor, or other supplier to get their shot.
A CDC program, not the state, handled the initial immunizations in all long-term care facilities and many assisted living facilities. This program used the Moderna vaccine, which is not covered by today’s recommendation.
We will be happy to work with AARP to discuss issues, connect them with information, and collaborate on messaging. When Pfizer Boosters get final approval, ADHS and local partners will send a message about availability and eligibility. As other outlets have reported, Maricopa County, which is the home base for public health in the Phoenix area, has a strong home vaccination program in place, as well as support for vaccination in places of assembly.
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