Oregon’s vaccine allocation could accelerate timeline


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — With an increase in allocated doses, Oregon should have enough doses to vaccinate nearly all Oregonians who want it by the end of April.

Oregon Health Authority Director Patrick Allen told the House Subcommittee on COVID-19 last week that there could be enough vaccine for 70% of adult Oregonians by April 21.

“Based on current federal forecasts of vaccines received, we should actually be at a place at April 21 where we would have received enough vaccine to hit 70% of the adult population, and by – as the President said yesterday- 100% by the end of May.”

There isn’t an official number of eligible Oregonians who will choose not to get vaccinated.

Allen said an increase in doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine is the reason for the accelerated timeline.

“That’s assuming we continue to get a per capita allocation of that…we think this is a reasonably reliable forecast of where we should be,” he said. “This will likely allow us to accelerate the timelines for different categories…candidly I would like to get further between senior populations before we move onto other populations.”

Getting people signed up for doses remains a challenge as tens of thousands of seniors wait for a call from the state, informing them they can get an appointment. Appointments at vaccine clinics are quickly booked each day. The state and counties intend to expand clinic capacity.

The Oregon Convention Center is accommodating 15,000 appointments each week but plans are in the works to expand capacity as more doses become available in Oregon.

Pharmacies are also receiving more doses and more pharmacy chains are utilizing online resources for appointment booking. For example, Walmart has started posting open appointments in Oregon.

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