COVID-19 REPORT: Some health conditions added to vaccine qualifications

John Christensen
The Chronicle-Express

The Finger Lakes COVID-19 Vaccine Hub is asking people with comorbidities to wait before calling their doctor

At the end of January, New York State announced that starting Feb. 15, adults with certain health conditions will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This expansion added numerous more residents to the eligibility list, and tasked local health departments with determining how, where, and when to validate eligible individuals with comorbidities and schedule appointments for them.

The Finger Lakes COVID-19 Vaccine Hub is asking people with comorbidities to wait before calling their doctor since they will not have any information to offer as yet.

"Until that process is in place, please do not call your doctor’s office or your local health department,” stated the Vaccine Hub officials. “They will not be able to offer information about the vaccine process until they receive guidance from the state. Keep in mind vaccine supply and distribution change frequently according to state guidelines.”

"We understand people are incredibly anxious to be vaccinated, and rightfully so," stated Yates County Public Health officials on their Facebook page. "However, eligibility does not equal availability right now, as demand continues to greatly outweigh vaccine allocation in our region and across the state. We know that there are a lot of questions and further need for clarification, but continue to ask for everyone’s patience as Yates County Public Health works through this process. We will release all of the details for our local plan as they become finalized."

Proof of eligibility and registration is required. Clinic registration links will be posted on the YCPH Facebook page and at their website link below.

As of Friday Feb. 12, YCPH was still waiting to receive vaccine, so no clinic dates have been established yet.

"Once received, a clinic will be set up and the registration link will be posted on our Facebook page and website. Please keep in mind that vaccine supply is still limited and we are only able to vaccinate as many people as we receive doses for each week. We thank you for your patience."

For more information on what proof of eligibility you will need to provide, visit the YCPH website at: www.yatescounty.org/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=195.

Local COVID statistics

Yates County's numbers continue to improve in the fight against the spread of COVID-19. Last week, only 17 new cases were reported to YCPH. The number of active cases fell from 52 to 18, the 7-day case positivity rate fell from 4% to 24%, and the number in quarantine and isolation fell from 231 to 87. Two remained hospitalized.

Sadly, two more COVID-related deaths were recorded; one person in their 90s and the other in their 70s. The total death toll for Yates County now stands at 24 since the beginning of the pandemic.

Starting Feb. 15, adults with certain health conditions will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in New York.