Johnson County Phase 2 vaccine distribution expands this week — what you need to know

Johnson County Phase 2 vaccine

Johnson County is continuing to roll out its vaccine effort to individuals in Phase 2, including those 65 and older and certain essential workers. Photo courtesy Navy Medicine. Used under a Creative Commons license.

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As Johnson County enters the second week of Phase 2 COVID-19 vaccinations, more residents are eligible to get vaccines. And some may even be preparing for their second dose.

County health officials said last week about 30,000 Johnson County residents have been vaccinated so far. That total includes vaccines distributed by the county, as well as through hospitals and in long-term care facilities through the federal Pharmacy Partnership Program.

As the second week of Phase 2 vaccinations begins, here are some important points to remember:

Overall, vaccine supply remains limited

  • County health officials are still urging residents to have patience as vaccine distribution continues.
  • The county says it received another 6,825 doses from the state last week.
  • Overall, the county has gotten about 25,000 doses since the start of January. That compares to the estimated 150,000 Johnson Countians who may be eligible to get vaccinated in Phase 2.
  • “This is a very, very large group so we’re doing our best to prioritize everyone within that group. As we get more doses, we will be putting the vaccine into the arms of people as quickly as we can,” county health director Sanmi Areola, Ph.D., said last week.

Hospitals are starting to schedule vaccination appointments for people 65 and older

  • Two major Johnson County hospitals, AdventHealth and Olathe Medical Center, will begin vaccinating this week.
  • If you have been a patient in either of those systems in the past three years and are 65 or older, they will contact you when an appointment becomes available.
  • You are urged not to call AdventHealth or Olathe Medical Center for an appointment but to wait for notification that a slot is available.
  • Other local hospitals, including HCA, KU and St. Luke’s, have also been reaching out and setting up appointments with their patients, with some already receiving vaccines in the last week.

The county’s clinic will continue focusing on individuals 80 and older

  • The county is still urging residents who are 80 and older to fill out the vaccine interest survey to let them know you want a vaccine.
  • This includes seniors living in independent living communities who have not been offered vaccine clinics through the Pharmacy Partnership Program.
  • Once you fill out the interest form, you should receive a follow-up email or phone call instructing you on how to set up a vaccine appointment.

Some teachers, first responders will also be prioritized this week

  • Children’s Mercy Hospital will be giving out 1,900 doses to some teachers, including public school special education teachers and the staff at the Kansas School for the Deaf in Olathe.
  • These teachers are being prioritized because many of them have been teaching in person this year because of their students’ learning needs. Other teachers should be informed through their districts when their turn to get vaccinated comes.
  • The county will also be vaccinating first responders, including police officers, firefighters and members of the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office.

Second doses are being scheduled and given

  • JCDHE says it has reached out to 2,500 individuals to schedule their second dose for some time this week.
  • If you have received your first dose, you should have received a record card with a date for when you should receive your second dose. (For the Pfizer vaccine, the second dose should come 21 days later. For the Moderna vaccine, it’s 28 days later.)
  • County health officials say you should plan to get your second dose at the same place you received your first dose, whether that was through your primary care provider or at the county’s clinic.
  • If you received your first dose through the county, JCDHE says it will contact you by phone or email closer to the date of your second dose to set up an appointment.