June 19, 2021

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COVID-19 vaccine distribution in SC, NC, Georgia

Here, you can find up-to-the-minute information on the COVID-19 vaccine in the Carolinas and Georgia. Monday 1:15 p.m.: The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced Monday that South Carolina received its first COVID-19 vaccine.The department said that nearly 43,000 doses are anticipated to arrive in the state by Wednesday.DHEC officials said limited supply of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will be securely distributed to 56 sites throughout the state by the end of the week.Read more here.Monday 1 p.m.: Monday 12:40 p.m.:Horry County has received its first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.According to information from Conway Medical Center, the hospital received a shipment of 975 doses of the Pfizer vaccine at 9 a.m. Monday. Hospital staff said it is being stored in a secure location in an ultra-cold storage unit. A CMC spokesperson said vaccinations of frontline employees will begin Monday.A DHEC spokesperson said they have enrolled 307 provider locations as of Friday. As of Saturday, DHEC anticipated 56 locations will be used for the first week of vaccine allocation and were finalizing additional activation locations.Limited doses of the vaccine began arriving at hospitals across the country as the national death toll of COVID-19-related deaths closed in on 300,000.Monday 12:30 p.m.:Atrium Health says it is the first health system in North Carolina to administer an FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine. “Atrium Health is proud to be have been among the first in the nation to receive and distribute the initial vaccine allotments, which is critically necessary to slow the spread and lessen the detrimental effects of the virus” a news release said. “The health system has worked to develop comprehensive plans to safely and effectively distribute the vaccine, as vaccination is the best way to prevent infection from COVID-19.”Monday 12 p.m. :WYFF News 4 has reached out to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control about the delivery of the vaccine in the state. DHEC officials said they are not releasing specific locations at this time due to security concerns over the limited supply. DHEC said more details are expected later Monday. WYFF News 4 has also reached out to hospitals in South Carolina about the vaccine and are told no details are being released due to security concerns or they do not have a timeline as to when the vaccine will be delivered. Mission Hospital in Asheville said its shipment has been delayed until the end of next week. Monday 10 a.m.:Monday 8 a.m.: Click here to read who gets the vaccine first in South Carolina.RELATED: COVID-19 in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia: Tracking cases, deaths and latest restrictionsMonday 7 a.m.: The first of many freezer-packed COVID-19 vaccine vials made their way to distribution sites across the United States on Sunday, as the nation’s pandemic deaths approached the horrifying new milestone of 300,000.The rollout of the Pfizer vaccine, the first to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, ushers in the biggest vaccination effort in U.S. history — one that health officials hope the American public will embrace, even as some have voiced initial skepticism or worry. Shots are expected to be given to health care workers and nursing home residents beginning Monday.Quick transport is key for the vaccine, especially since this one must be stored at extremely low temperatures — about 94 degrees below zero. Early Sunday, workers at Pfizer — dressed in fluorescent yellow clothing, hard hats and gloves — wasted no time as they packed vials into boxes. They scanned the packages and then placed them into freezer cases with dry ice. The vaccines were then taken from Pfizer’s Portage, Michigan, facility to Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, where the first cargo plane took off amid what airport officials called a “jubilant” mood.“This is a historic day,” said Richard W. Smith, who oversees operations in the Americas for FedEx Express, which is delivering 630-some packages of vaccine to distribution sites across the country. United Parcel Service also is transporting a share of the vaccine.Helping with the transport of the vaccine has special meaning to Bruce Smith, a FedEx package handler at the Grand Rapids airport, whose older sister, Queen, died after she contracted the coronavirus in May. She was hospitalized in Georgia one day after he saw her on a video chat, and they never spoke again.“I think she would be ecstatic to know that something that has ravaged our family — that a family member is going to be part of such a big project,” said Smith, 58, whose nephew, Queen’s son, also got sick and is still undergoing therapy for stroke-like symptoms. “It is very, very important.”Tracked with GPS-enabled sensors, the initial shipments were expected to contain about 3 million doses, with many more to come. Federal officials say the first shipments of Pfizer’s vaccine will be staggered, arriving in 145 distribution centers Monday, with another 425 sites getting shipments Tuesday, and the remaining 66 on Wednesday. Doses of the vaccine, co-developed by German partner BioNTech, are given out based on each state’s adult population. Then the states decide where they go first.In California, where health care workers will be among the first to be vaccinated, state health officials are prioritizing hospitals that have adequate storage capacity, serve high-risk populations and have the ability to vaccinate people quickly.Initial surveys have found that even some health care workers don’t want to be first in line. Dr. Graham Snyder, who’s led the vaccine task force at Pennsylvania health care giant UPMC, estimates that about half of its employees are willing to get the vaccine as soon as it’s offered.But many health officials expect enthusiasm to grow.“There’s that thought that maybe they don’t have to be so afraid to come to work if they can be vaccinated and be immune,” said Dr. Sandra Kemmerly, medical director of hospital quality at the 40-hospital Oschner Health System in Louisiana and Mississippi. Employees approved for the first round are getting texts and emails directing them to schedule their initial injection, she said. Enough vaccine is being saved so that each person who gets the first dose of vaccine can get a second required shot a few weeks later.Senior U.S. government officials, including some White House officials who work in close proximity to President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, are among those who will be offered coronavirus vaccines as soon as this week, two people familiar with the matter confirmed.A survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that about half of Americans want to get the vaccine as soon as possible. Another quarter aren’t sure, while the remaining quarter say they aren’t interested. Some simply oppose vaccines in general. Others are concerned that the vaccines have been rushed and want to see how the rollout goes.Dr. Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the FDA, which approved the Pfizer vaccine Friday, has repeatedly insisted that the agency’s decision was based on science, not politics, despite a White House threat to fire him if the vaccine wasn’t approved before Saturday.Speaking to Fox News Sunday, Dr. Moncef Slaoui, chief science adviser to Operation Warp Speed, a U.S. effort to get vaccines developed quickly, also said he is “very concerned” about the skepticism about the vaccine in some circles.“Unfortunately … there’s been a confusion between how thorough and scientific and factual the work that has been done is, and the perception that people are thinking that we cut corners …,” Slaoui said. “I can guarantee you that no such things have happened, that we follow the science.”He called the development of vaccines from several pharmaceutical companies, including Moderna and AstraZeneca, “a remarkable achievement of science, academia, the industry ecosystem and the U.S. government, working together.”While the vaccine was determined to be safe, regulators in the U.K. are investigating several severe allergic reactions. The FDA’s instructions tell providers not to give it to those with a known history of severe allergic reactions to any of its ingredients.The Moderna vaccine will be reviewed by an expert panel Thursday and soon afterward could be allowed for public use.

Here, you can find up-to-the-minute information on the COVID-19 vaccine in the Carolinas and Georgia.


Monday 1:15 p.m.:

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced Monday that South Carolina received its first COVID-19 vaccine.

The department said that nearly 43,000 doses are anticipated to arrive in the state by Wednesday.

DHEC officials said limited supply of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will be securely distributed to 56 sites throughout the state by the end of the week.

Read more here.

Monday 1 p.m.:

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

Monday 12:40 p.m.:

Horry County has received its first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

According to information from Conway Medical Center, the hospital received a shipment of 975 doses of the Pfizer vaccine at 9 a.m. Monday.

Hospital staff said it is being stored in a secure location in an ultra-cold storage unit. A CMC spokesperson said vaccinations of frontline employees will begin Monday.

A DHEC spokesperson said they have enrolled 307 provider locations as of Friday. As of Saturday, DHEC anticipated 56 locations will be used for the first week of vaccine allocation and were finalizing additional activation locations.

Limited doses of the vaccine began arriving at hospitals across the country as the national death toll of COVID-19-related deaths closed in on 300,000.

Monday 12:30 p.m.:

Atrium Health says it is the first health system in North Carolina to administer an FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine.

“Atrium Health is proud to be have been among the first in the nation to receive and distribute the initial vaccine allotments, which is critically necessary to slow the spread and lessen the detrimental effects of the virus” a news release said. “The health system has worked to develop comprehensive plans to safely and effectively distribute the vaccine, as vaccination is the best way to prevent infection from COVID-19.”

Monday 12 p.m. :

WYFF News 4 has reached out to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control about the delivery of the vaccine in the state. DHEC officials said they are not releasing specific locations at this time due to security concerns over the limited supply. DHEC said more details are expected later Monday.

WYFF News 4 has also reached out to hospitals in South Carolina about the vaccine and are told no details are being released due to security concerns or they do not have a timeline as to when the vaccine will be delivered.

Mission Hospital in Asheville said its shipment has been delayed until the end of next week.

Monday 10 a.m.:

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

Monday 8 a.m.:

Click here to read who gets the vaccine first in South Carolina.

RELATED: COVID-19 in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia: Tracking cases, deaths and latest restrictions

Monday 7 a.m.:

The first of many freezer-packed COVID-19 vaccine vials made their way to distribution sites across the United States on Sunday, as the nation’s pandemic deaths approached the horrifying new milestone of 300,000.

The rollout of the Pfizer vaccine, the first to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, ushers in the biggest vaccination effort in U.S. history — one that health officials hope the American public will embrace, even as some have voiced initial skepticism or worry. Shots are expected to be given to health care workers and nursing home residents beginning Monday.

Quick transport is key for the vaccine, especially since this one must be stored at extremely low temperatures — about 94 degrees below zero. Early Sunday, workers at Pfizer — dressed in fluorescent yellow clothing, hard hats and gloves — wasted no time as they packed vials into boxes. They scanned the packages and then placed them into freezer cases with dry ice. The vaccines were then taken from Pfizer’s Portage, Michigan, facility to Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, where the first cargo plane took off amid what airport officials called a “jubilant” mood.

“This is a historic day,” said Richard W. Smith, who oversees operations in the Americas for FedEx Express, which is delivering 630-some packages of vaccine to distribution sites across the country. United Parcel Service also is transporting a share of the vaccine.

Helping with the transport of the vaccine has special meaning to Bruce Smith, a FedEx package handler at the Grand Rapids airport, whose older sister, Queen, died after she contracted the coronavirus in May. She was hospitalized in Georgia one day after he saw her on a video chat, and they never spoke again.

“I think she would be ecstatic to know that something that has ravaged our family — that a family member is going to be part of such a big project,” said Smith, 58, whose nephew, Queen’s son, also got sick and is still undergoing therapy for stroke-like symptoms. “It is very, very important.”

Tracked with GPS-enabled sensors, the initial shipments were expected to contain about 3 million doses, with many more to come. Federal officials say the first shipments of Pfizer’s vaccine will be staggered, arriving in 145 distribution centers Monday, with another 425 sites getting shipments Tuesday, and the remaining 66 on Wednesday. Doses of the vaccine, co-developed by German partner BioNTech, are given out based on each state’s adult population. Then the states decide where they go first.

In California, where health care workers will be among the first to be vaccinated, state health officials are prioritizing hospitals that have adequate storage capacity, serve high-risk populations and have the ability to vaccinate people quickly.

Initial surveys have found that even some health care workers don’t want to be first in line. Dr. Graham Snyder, who’s led the vaccine task force at Pennsylvania health care giant UPMC, estimates that about half of its employees are willing to get the vaccine as soon as it’s offered.

But many health officials expect enthusiasm to grow.

“There’s that thought that maybe they don’t have to be so afraid to come to work if they can be vaccinated and be immune,” said Dr. Sandra Kemmerly, medical director of hospital quality at the 40-hospital Oschner Health System in Louisiana and Mississippi. Employees approved for the first round are getting texts and emails directing them to schedule their initial injection, she said. Enough vaccine is being saved so that each person who gets the first dose of vaccine can get a second required shot a few weeks later.

Senior U.S. government officials, including some White House officials who work in close proximity to President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, are among those who will be offered coronavirus vaccines as soon as this week, two people familiar with the matter confirmed.

A survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that about half of Americans want to get the vaccine as soon as possible. Another quarter aren’t sure, while the remaining quarter say they aren’t interested. Some simply oppose vaccines in general. Others are concerned that the vaccines have been rushed and want to see how the rollout goes.

Dr. Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the FDA, which approved the Pfizer vaccine Friday, has repeatedly insisted that the agency’s decision was based on science, not politics, despite a White House threat to fire him if the vaccine wasn’t approved before Saturday.

Speaking to Fox News Sunday, Dr. Moncef Slaoui, chief science adviser to Operation Warp Speed, a U.S. effort to get vaccines developed quickly, also said he is “very concerned” about the skepticism about the vaccine in some circles.

“Unfortunately … there’s been a confusion between how thorough and scientific and factual the work that has been done is, and the perception that people are thinking that we cut corners …,” Slaoui said. “I can guarantee you that no such things have happened, that we follow the science.”

He called the development of vaccines from several pharmaceutical companies, including Moderna and AstraZeneca, “a remarkable achievement of science, academia, the industry ecosystem and the U.S. government, working together.”

While the vaccine was determined to be safe, regulators in the U.K. are investigating several severe allergic reactions. The FDA’s instructions tell providers not to give it to those with a known history of severe allergic reactions to any of its ingredients.

The Moderna vaccine will be reviewed by an expert panel Thursday and soon afterward could be allowed for public use.