DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. — Health leaders in Davidson County set a record on Monday by vaccinating close to 1,000 people across the county. The new milestone will not be set for long because of limited doses getting to the county.
“There is a large demand right now for a vaccine in our community and we just simply don’t have enough,” said Janna Walker, who’s a public health strategist for the Davidson County Health Department. Walker told FOX8 there’s staff and a plan to keep increasing the numbers of people they vaccinate each day, but the lack of supply is holding them back.
This week the county is not receiving a shipment of vaccine doses from the state.
“This will be the first time that we haven’t had any allocations,” Walker said. She attributes the trouble to the amount of vaccine being made compared to the need.
“I think that’s all a production thing,” she said. “We knew coming into this that the demand for the vaccine was much higher than the amount of vaccine available and at some point, we will catch up.”
Her team tracks the number of doses and how they can spread them out over time. On Monday 980 shots were given out and now they’re forced to spread out the remaining 550 doses until Wednesday.
“We’ve taken a lot of care and time to make sure we track how many doses we give each day,” Walker said. “That way we can plan those three or four weeks out and then pepper in the new folks that we get.”
Across the state, more than 424,000 first vaccines have been given out since Dec. 14 according to the NC Department of Health and Human Services COVID-19 vaccination dashboard. In Davidson County, more than 6,300 first doses have been administered so far. All these numbers are reported back to NCDHHS to help plan for the future.
“Across the state, it goes into a portal,” Walker said. “It’s called CVMS [COVID-19 Vaccine Management System] and so that’s what we register all of our doses. We can track our inventories and things like that.”
Once doses arrive from the federal government several factors go into where it winds up in North Carolina.
“Depending on hospital staff, front-line workers, population, rate of distribution and so on,” she said. While workers keep giving out doses in Davidson County, Walker said they’re always planning ahead. “I’m hoping that next week looks a little different.”
Walker said the vaccine shortage does not impact people who have appointments for a second dose. FOX8 reached out to the Department of Health and Human Services repeatedly on Monday for a comment and have not heard back yet.