DALLAS — Vaccinations across the state paused as a winter storm barreled towards Texas last week. As temperatures have finally risen above freezing and roads clear, cities and counties prepare to begin administering vaccines to eligible residents again, including in Dallas County.
“Vaccine operations will resume on Sunday with us only seeing the people who need a second shot, who have waited the longest for their second shot,” said Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins on Twitter Friday afternoon. “We will catch up on second shots throughout this next week. You need not worry. If you are due a second shot, you will receive one.”
Starting at 1 p.m., those initially scheduled to get their second dose of the vaccine on or before February 12 visited the county’s Fair Park location in South Dallas to receive it. Those with last names starting with A-M were given shots between 1:00 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. while persons with last names beginning with N-Z showed up between 3:30 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.
On Twitter, Jenkins said the distribution of the first dose of shots would return as soon as the “throughput for second shots is sufficient to ensure the second shots are given timely.”
In a press release, officials said, the facility will open at 8 a.m. Anyone who was supposed to receive a shot on or before February 13 should visit the location before it closes at 6 p.m.
They urge residents to use the same time slot they had when getting the first dose. During a press conference on Thursday, city officials addressed damage to the Tower Building as a result of the winter storm. The building sustained some main breaks and pipe breaks.
“It’s being used as an observation building after people get the vaccine at the Grand, so at this time we don’t see any disruptions to the Fair Park site as vaccinations are concerned,” Rocky Vaz, director of the Office of Emergency Management.
Last week, providers across the state were allocated 591,920 first doses of COVID-19 vaccine from the federal government. According to its website, the Texas Department of State Health Services has requested that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ship the nearly 600,000 doses to 563 providers in 230 countries. Large vaccine clinics in counties such as Dallas, Tarrant, and Harris will see 84,240 doses of the shot.
Texas has also ordered 364,830 doses specifically for people who received their first vaccination weeks ago and still in need of the second shot.
The delay was a result of the storm that left millions without power and water for days as the state’s electric grid failed. To date, more than 100,000 first doses and 300,000 second doses that were scheduled for delivery this week still await shipment because of weather conditions impacting out-of-state warehouses and even those across the country. But the state’s health department says shipments should be delivered in the first half of the week, followed by the vaccine allocation for the next week.
As of now, 4.3 million doses have been administered in the state, and 1.3 million people are fully vaccinated, reports show.
For more information on vaccinations in the county, visit https://www.dallascounty.org/.