COVID Vaccine Info
WA State DOH Phase Finder Tool (evaluates phase eligibility)
These Informational Q&A's about vaccine delivery provide helpful details about vaccine roll-out in San Juan County:
On Monday January 18th, Governor Inslee and the WA State DOH authorized delivery of vaccine to those in the Phase 1b Tier 1 eligibility group (note that the eligibility age has been reduced to 65 or over). Please remember that vaccine supplies are still extremely limited, and it is estimated that approximately 5,000 San Juan County residents will qualify for the first Tier of Phase 1b.
Islanders who are Phase 1b Tier 1 eligible and would like to learn more about how to receive a vaccine should carefully read this document. Please remember that until the Federal government vaccine supply increases, a very small number of San Juan County residents will be able to be immunized, regardless of Phase eligibility.
-Individuals should not contact medical providers, local health agencies, or pharmacies to inquire about vaccine delivery at this time.
What we know about the COVID Vaccine:
-San Juan County Health & Community Services understands there is tremendous demand for the vaccine from those who may not be included in Phase 1a. Please know that though every effort will be made to distribute vaccine rapidly and equitably, patience and empathy will get us through this. Timing, volume, and eligibility requirements are all outside of San Juan County control. The Health & Community Services team will continue to advocate on the islands’ behalf and plan for a robust and rapid distribution as soon as doses arrive.
-Managing of our collective expectations is critical. Administration of vaccine will not be instantaneous. There will be shortfalls and delays in vaccine delivery to the islands. It will be many months until the supply necessary to vaccinate all island residents will be available. Even those individuals who are especially vulnerable to the disease may need to wait some time until immunizations are possible.
-Current WA DOH estimates are that there will be enough vaccine in WA by early February to vaccinate approximately 7% of WA residents. The details of this forecast will change with time, but it is a useful number to help set expectations.
-So far, all vaccines require two doses spread 21-28 days apart. Full protection is not achieved until fourteen days after the second dose, as the body needs time to develop maximum protection against the virus.
-It is important to understand that though the Moderna vaccine is thought to be 94% effective (average flu vaccine is 40- 60% effective), this means that 1 in 20 who receive the COVID vaccine are not protected.
-As vaccine delivery ramps up, the islands need to maintain existing safety practices. Masking. Hygiene. Avoiding travel. Eliminating indoor social contacts. Ensuring that those who engage in higher-risk activities quarantine after doing so. Until the disease is truly under control, the risk of transmission remains, even from those who have been vaccinated. See this FAQ for more details.