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Northern Rockies Medical Center’s Dr. Hank Clay, above, receives the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine from NRMC’s Kelsey Walsh, RN. Trish Auguare, NRMC Business Office employee, doesn’t even cringe when NRMC’s Melissa Laverdure, RN, administers the first round of her vaccination.

“We started administering the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine for all those in the Phase 1A group in late December,” said Jenny Krapf, Glacier County Health Department Director. “We hope to be finished providing the vaccine for this group later his month.”

Phase 1A recipients included frontline healthcare workers, healthcare workers with direct patient contact or virus exposure, long-term care and assisted living facilities staff and residents.

All of those in Phase 1A who received the first round of shots will need to have the follow-up shot in 28 days to complete the Moderna brand vaccination. 

Once all the eligible recipients in the Phase 1A group in Glacier County, and throughout the State of Montana,  have received the vaccine, state officials will determine the start date for administering the vaccine to those in the Phase 1B group.

“We hope to be able to start at the end of this month, but it all depends on the completion of everyone in Phase 1A and when the state begins distribution of the next round of vaccine,” explained Krapf.

Phase 1B no longer includes frontline essential workers such as teachers and those working with the public. That group is now in Phase 1C. People ages 16-69 with high-risk medical conditions were moved from Phase 1C to Phase 1B.

Krapf pointed out, each facility or clinic will be handling the vaccine distribution a little differently. 

“Be sure and check with your provider to see what their protocol will be,” urged Krapf. “Both Osco Pharmacy in Cut Bank and Glacier Pharmacy in Cut Bank plan on carrying the vaccine, although they do not have any yet,” she added.

The local newspaper and radio stations, as well as several Facebook pages, will be providing updated information regarding the COVID-19 vaccinations.

Krapf suggested those with questions about the vaccine or vaccination protocol should check out the Department of Public Health and Human Services website at:

https://dphhs.mt.gov/publichealth/cdepi/diseases/coronavirusvaccine

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