El Paso, TX

El Pasoans become eligible for the COVID vaccine today, as concerns about an Easter holiday surge grows

Euri Giles | Clareifi

While it still may prove to be challenging to secure an appointment, and there are also concerns about availability regarding the number of available doses.

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photo by By Moonhonor / Shutterstock

Beginning today, Monday, March 29, 2021:

All Adult El Pasoans are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine where available.

According to The Texas Department of State Health Services:

"Texas to Open COVID-19 Vaccination to All Adults on March 29"

City efforts to make the COVID-19 vaccine easily accessible to El Pasoans have been an ongoing priority using a phased approach. However beginning today Monday, March 29 all adult El Pasoans age will become eligible to receive an available COVID-19 vaccine.

On their website, The Texas Department of State Health Services states that:

"Online registration will be the best option for most people. For those for whom that is not an option, DSHS will launch a toll-free number to provide assistance making an appointment with a participating provider or locating another provider that has a vaccine available.

To date, Texas has administered more than 10.9 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, representing more than 12% of the population. Most vaccines are authorized for people 18 years old and older; the FDA has authorized the Pfizer vaccine for use in people 16 and older."

As more El Pasoans are registering to receive the available COVID-19 vaccines the City of El Paso is working to make sure that citizens are aware of the available resources, as well as city and county-wide restrictions that remain in place.

The City of El Paso announced via Twitter previously that vaccine statistics would be monitored through a new vaccine dashboard.

The dashboard can be viewed on the epstrong.org website.

El Paso Mayor Oscar Leeser and County Judge Ricardo Samaniego announced the community vaccine dashboard on March 8th.

*As of March 28, 2021 - data from the Texas Department of State Health Services indicated that the number of people vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in El Paso County, TX is 233,007 

The number of people in El Paso County who had been fully vaccinated currently stands at 133,515 which represents 15.94% of the population.

These numbers are rising as more El Pasoans can register for the vaccine. El Paso county like the rest of Texas is moving through a tiered approach to administering the available doses of COVID-19 vaccines. With the announcement of vaccines available to all adult Texans, including El Pasoans the amount of fully vaccinated individuals is expected to rise quickly. Today is the day! Although there had been reports of El Pasoans able to access registration sites earlier than today.

Before today The City of El Paso was on a phased approach following CDC guidelines.

"If you qualify under the current Phase 1A or 1B and have already registered to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, you’re on the list! As vaccines become available, those who have registered will receive an email and text message when it’s their turn to book their COVID-19 vaccine."

Older citizens above the age of 65 have priority, followed by Individuals aged 16+ with underlying medical conditions that may increase their risk of infection.

According to the CDC:

"As vaccine availability increases, vaccination recommendations will expand to include more groups

The goal is for everyone to be able to easily get a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as large enough quantities of vaccine are available. As vaccine supply increases but remains limited, ACIP will expand the groups recommended for vaccination."

Locally in El Paso, the city continues its efforts to ensure that all El Pasoans can easily get to testing and vaccination centers by offering free bus rides.

Sun Metro - The City of El Paso bus service continues to offer free rides to COVID-19 vaccine sites.

There is concern about a surge in cases due to spring break travel, and the upcoming Easter holiday with El Paso being a family-oriented city.

El Pasoans are reminded that even after they have received either the single-dose vaccine or the second and final dose they are not considered fully vaccinated until after two weeks have passed.

We are all encouraged to continue to make smart decisions. Wear a mask, practice social distancing when in public, wash your hands and:

Stay healthy El Paso!

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Euri Giles covers lifestyle content and news in Texas ranging from parenting, and food to politics.

El Paso, TX
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