FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: February 22, 2021
Contact: Jon Ebelt, Public Information Officer, DPHHS, (406) 444-0936, (406) 461-3757, email@example.com
Chuck Council, Communications Specialist, DPHHS, (406) 444-4391, (406) 461-8367, firstname.lastname@example.org
Over 216,000 Total COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Now Administered in Montana
DPHHS to Distribute More COVID-19 Vaccine Doses for the Week of February 22
The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) will distribute statewide to local jurisdictions during the week of February 22 a total of 20,930 COVID-19 vaccine first doses and 16,990 second doses for those completing the vaccine series as part of its weekly allocation from the federal government.
This is a slight uptick in weekly vaccine dose allocations, and includes two more Pfizer trays that account for an additional 2,340 doses. The increase can also be attributed to an adjustment by the federal government that allows for six doses to be extracted per Pfizer vial as opposed to the previous five dose calibration.
DPHHS continues to be notified by the federal government week-to-week regarding vaccine allocation. However, the agency has been assured the amounts will not be less than current levels.
While the federal government’s vaccine shipments to the state remain low, DPHHS continues its work to efficiently allocate doses across Montana. Factors that affect vaccine allocation to counties include the local jurisdiction’s estimated population of those eligible to receive the vaccine in each phase, previous allocations to each specific provider, and the amount of vaccine that such provider has left to administer.
DPHHS then uses this information to determine specific allocations to local jurisdictions before they are notified every Friday. The local jurisdictions then begin to make their vaccine allocation plans for the following week.
County administration numbers are updated every Monday on the state’s vaccine dashboard.
216,383 Total Doses Now Administered
Montana is in Phase 1B. In Phase 1B, COVID-19 vaccines are available to Montanans 70 years of age and older, 16 to 69 years of age with a high-risk medical condition, and Native Americans and other persons of color who may be at elevated risk for COVID-19 complications.
As of February 22, 2021, a total of 216,383 Montanans has received the COVID-19 vaccine first dose and 68,191 people are fully immunized. These numbers are updated daily on the vaccine dashboard. The dashboard includes information on total vaccine doses administered, Montanans fully immunized, and doses administered per 1,000 eligible people across Montana counties.
DPHHS has Vaccine Landing Page Website with Local Resources
For vaccine-related information, go to the DPHHS COVID-19 vaccine website landing page that includes a map with local information and resources. Local jurisdictions continue to hold vaccine clinics for those eligible in Phase 1B and are providing regular updates online about vaccine availability at the local level. This information changes constantly so Montanans are encouraged to check the map frequently.
The DPHHS map links to online and social media sites where jurisdictions share information regularly on vaccine availability and scheduling. The map also includes the best local phone number to call, but Montanans are urged to utilize the online information first due to high call volumes.
Health officials also state that during the vaccination process, it’s important to remain vigilant to limit the spread of COVID-19. Montanans are encouraged to continue to practice basic public health prevention methods to keep case numbers low while the vaccine rollout continues: wear a mask to protect yourself and others, practice social distancing by staying six feet apart, stay home if you are sick, cover your cough, wash your hands often, and avoid large crowds.