Latest COVID-19 vaccine updates: Montgomery County Public Health District to vaccinate public when more doses become available

Phase 1 of vaccine distribution is underway. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Phase 1 of vaccine distribution is underway. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Phase 1 of vaccine distribution is underway. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

This story will continue to be updated as vaccine distribution continues.

Updated 9:55 a.m. Jan. 5

Montgomery County Public Health District to vaccinate public when more doses become available

The Montgomery County Public Health District is currently distributing COVID-19 vaccines through the Texas Department of State Health Services to individual providers such as hospitals and pharmacies. At this time, the MCPHD is not involved in mass distribution to the public, according to a Jan. 4 news release from the health district.

The public health clinic has received 100 doses of the Moderna vaccine, and they have been allocated to first responders, public health staff, health care workers and employees.

The MCPHD does plan to vaccinate some of the general public when additional vaccines become available, according to the news release. When those doses are available, a link to make an appointment online will be posted at the MCPHD's website.

"Texas receives shipments of the vaccine weekly, so we are expecting the supply to grow more and more in the coming months," MCPHD Public Information Officer Misti Willingham said in the statement. "We appreciate your patience and understanding during these unprecedented times."

The COVID-19 Call Center is available to take questions regarding COVID-19 general questions, testing and vaccines at 936-523-3916.

Meanwhile, the FBI is warning the public to be aware of COVID-19 vaccine-related fraud, according to a news release from the agency. Potential indicators of fraudulent activity include offers for early access to a vaccine upon payment of a deposit or fee, requests asking individuals to pay to obtain a vaccine or put their name on a waiting list, and offers to undergo additional medical testing or procedures when obtaining a vaccine.

Updated Dec. 30

Countywide doses

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, 2,324 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Montgomery County as of Dec. 31. The DSHS estimates there are 29,453 frontline workers and individuals considered part of the area's vulnerable population.

Statewide, these numbers are 773,000 and 282,515, respectively, according to DSHS.

There are four vaccine providers in Conroe that have received a shipment of vaccines, according to the DSHS: two H-E-Bs, Lone Star Family Health Center and Family Life Medical. There is one in Montgomery, Brookshires Pharmacy on Eva Street, and none in Willis, according to the DSHS.

Updated 5:25 p.m. Dec. 31

Conroe nursing home awaiting vaccines

This article originally incorrectly stated Brightpointe at Rivershire was scheduled to receive doses Dec. 22. The correct date is Dec. 29. It was also updated to include more information from a CVS representative.

Brightpointe at Rivershire, which was allegedly scheduled a round of vaccinations to be administered by CVS on Dec. 29, has not yet received its doses as of Dec. 31, said Susie Robinson, registered nurse and chief clinical officer at Brightpointe at Rivershire. The facility is a registered COVID-19 facility, meaning it has been treating coronavirus patients since August.

Walgreens and CVS are partnering with nursing homes and senior living facilities across the nation to order, supply and administer the doses. Problems arose for the Conroe nursing home when CVS workers were allegedly a no-show, according to Robinson.

The scheduled visit was pending confirmation, but Robinson said she was unable to get a hold of anyone at CVS or Omnicare, CVS' partner, to confirm details. When no confirmation was received, the facility went ahead and prepared for the Dec. 29 appointment, but no one showed up, she said.

“I’m front line. I have a COVID[-19] unit; we are just as important as a COVID[-19] unit in a hospital,” she said. “There is no information; there is nobody to help us. So now we are stuck.”

Robinson said she ended up going to an H-E-B in Katy, where she lives, to receive a vaccine. But as of Dec. 31, she is the only one in the nursing home to be vaccinated.

CVS did not immediately have answers Dec. 31; however, a representative said they would look into the matter and verify if Brightpointe at Rivershire was on their list. CVS has previously released statements regarding its distribution plan to senior facilities, which includes a “hub and spoke” model, where about 1,100 CVS Pharmacy locations will store vaccines based on geographic need. Pharmacy teams will go to these locations to pick up doses on their way to long-term care facilities.

Original post 3:22 p.m. Dec. 31

Local hospitals begin administering to first responders

HCA Houston Healthcare Conroe and HCA Houston Healthcare Tomball provided a free COVID-19 vaccine clinic to Houston-area first responders on Dec. 28 and 29. Agencies that participated in the vaccine clinic included South Lake Houston Emergency Management Services, North Channel EMS, Jacinto City Fire Department, Spring Fire Department, Ponderosa Fire Department and Huffman EMS, among others.

“Because we are part of HCA Healthcare, one the largest health systems in the Houston area, we were able to quickly provide the COVID-19 vaccine to our first responder partners,” said Nathan Jung, director of EMS relations at HCA Houston Healthcare.
By Eva Vigh
Eva Vigh joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2018 as a reporter for Spring and Klein. Prior to this position, she covered upstream oil and gas news for a drilling contractors' association.


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