By David Jacobs | The Center Square
(The Center Square) – The Louisiana Department of Health announced Monday that 560 providers will get a share of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine doses this week.
Although supplies are limited, this week’s allocation from the federal government is expected to be the biggest yet and include about 38,000 doses of the newly approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Vaccinations are by appointment only, officials said. The list of providers, including contact information, is available at covidvaccine.la.gov. Residents also can call 211 to find a nearby provider.
Providers include 181 chain pharmacies, 161 independent pharmacies, 61 hospitals, 50 public health providers, 28 urgent cares, 22 federally qualified health centers, 22 medical practices, 13 rural health clinics and 22 other health care providers and can be found in every parish of the state, LDH said.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires a single dose to get the full benefit, rather than two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines. It also is less delicate and easier to store, which creates more options for distribution, Dr. Joseph Kanter with LDH said last week.
State officials expected to receive more than 130,000 doses this week including all three types.
More than 1.6 million of the state’s estimated 4.65 million residents are eligible to be vaccinated. Anyone who is at least 65 years old is eligible.
Other eligible groups include:
• Dialysis providers and patients;
• Ambulatory and outpatient providers and staff;
• Behavioral health providers and staff;
• Urgent care clinic providers and staff;
• Community care providers and staff;
• Dental care providers and staff;
• Nonemergency medical transportation providers and staff;
• Professional home care providers (including hospice workers) and home care recipients, including older and younger people with disabilities older than 16 who receive community or home-based care and clients of home health agencies;
• Interpreters and support service providers working in community and clinic-based settings, and clients who are both deaf and blind;
• Health-related support personnel, including lab staff, mortuary staff who have contact with corpses and pharmacy staff;
• Schools of allied health students, residents and staff;
• State and local essential COVID-19 emergency response personnel;
• Some elections staff for the March and April elections;
• Teachers and any other support staff working on site in K-12 or day care;
• All pregnant residents;
• People ages 55-64 with at least one of the conditions listed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as placing them at an “increased risk of severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19,” including cancer, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Down syndrome, heart conditions (including but not limited to heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies), weakened immune system from solid organ transplant, obesity, sickle cell disease, smoking and type 2 diabetes mellitus.