JVG_210121_VAX

Nurse Victoria Schiro administers a COVID-19 vaccine to Steve Kravick, a maintenance mechanic, at Mercyhealth Hospital and Trauma Center in Janesville.

The Walworth County Division of Public Health has launched an online registration form to help distribute COVID-19 vaccines to people age 65 and older who do not have consistent health care providers.

Meanwhile, Rock County Public Health Department officials say they have not yet finalized plans to address gaps in access to vaccines for people of that age group.

In coming weeks, people age 65 and older who have primary care doctors or affiliation with a health care provider should receive correspondence from the provider about scheduling vaccination appointments, according to officials from both counties.

Most people in that age group will receive vaccines from health care providers, said Jessica Turner, a Rock County health department spokeswoman.

Qualifying Walworth County residents who do not have relationships with health care providers can register online to be connected to a vaccination site in the county, according to a news release.

After registering, people will be contacted by vaccinators to schedule appointments, but that process might take several weeks depending on vaccine supply and availability, according to the release.

Those who do not meet the state’s current vaccine eligibility requirements should not register yet to avoid slowing down the registration system, according to the release.

Those who are eligible include:

  • People age 65 and older, beginning Monday.
  • Frontline health care workers.
  • Residents and staffs of nursing homes.
  • First responders.

Most health care workers, nursing home employees, nursing home residents and first responders will receive correspondence about vaccines from their employers or places of residence soon if they have not already.

Turner said Wednesday she plans to publicly share instructions soon for Rock County residents who do not have health care providers.

When asked if Rock County will host one of the state’s nine mobile sites, Turner said the county is considering all of its options.

Most people will be vaccinated by health care providers or at pharmacies, similar to the way they get flu shots, Turner said.

Laura Colyer Zagelow, owner and pharmacist at Hometown Pharmacy in Janesville, said the pharmacy has started to collect information on eligible people who want vaccines so they can be contacted for appointments when the pharmacy receives doses.

Hometown Pharmacy has requested vaccines from the state and is awaiting its first shipment, which ideally will arrive next week, she said.

Some or all of the pharmacy’s first shipment will be used to vaccinate residents at a state-run transitional housing facility, Colyer Zagelow said.

Representatives from Walgreens and CVS Pharmacy said stores eventually will have vaccines, but they do not have them yet. Those who qualify for vaccination will have to schedule appointments online with the pharmacies.

Rock County might get involved in “coordination or oversight of community sites if there is a need to fill gaps that other providers are not able to fill,” Turner said.

Health department officials have said they likely won’t administer vaccines unless “absolutely necessary.”

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