North Carolina receives first COVID-19 vaccine doses, shots could be administered today

[photo courtesy BioNTech SE]

North Carolina’s first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have arrived in the state, and the first inoculations could take place as early as today.

Governor Roy Cooper tweeted the news this morning after the state received what is expected to be a shipment of over 85,000 initial doses of the vaccine produced by Pfizer.

“It’s a limited supply for now, but this is a remarkable achievement for science and health,” Cooper said. “We all need to keep wearing a mask and acting responsibly while we get as many people vaccinated as fast as we can.”

A dozen hospitals scattered across the state are slated to receive the vaccines first, and were chosen because they had super-cold storage and other equipment required for the Pfizer vaccine.

The closest North Carolina hospital to the Outer Banks on the list is CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern.

Under North Carolina’s vaccine rollout plan, the first doses will be administered to every health care worker at high risk for exposure to COVID-19—doctors, nurses, and all who interact and care for patients with COVID-19, including those who clean areas used by patients, and those giving vaccines to these workers.

Also included in Phase 1a are long-term care staff and residents, which includes people in skilled nursing facilities and in adult, family and group homes.

[graphic courtesy NCDHHS]

Sentara Health is reportedly getting some of Virginia’s first doses today, which will be delivered to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

They will then distribute the shots to their healthcare facilities, which includes Sentara Albemarle Medical Center in Elizabeth City, but it is not yet known if those will be part of North Carolina or Virginia’s allocation.

ABC News reported a critical care nurse in New York was one of the first people in the United States to receive the vaccine this morning.

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