The Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Opens For Drive-thru Vaccines, City Council Seems To Be Just As Confused About Vaccine Rollout As We Are & More.

When we last checked in with pandemic-related updates in North Texas, City Council was floundering with a concise plan for vaccine distribution after being at odds with Mayor Eric Johnson. Unfortunately, based on lingering confusion at a Monday night special meeting, city council still doesn’t seem to fully have a robust plan of attack yet. The good news, is that Dallas is getting another vaccine hub at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in downtown.

Nationally, President Joe Biden is planning to buy an additional 200 million doses of the vaccine with plans to deliver 10 million doses per week. Some health experts predict Biden’s current plan might not get us to a place of herd immunity by fall. Biden said Monday that anyone who wants a vaccine will be able to get it by “this spring.”

If only we shared his optimism! Here’s the latest in North Texas:

  • On Tuesday, Dallas County reported 1,497 confirmed positive cases and 22 new deaths. This report raises the county’s cumulative case count to 221,012 and the total death toll to 2,052. Additionally, 361 probable cases were reported for a total of 1,858.

  • According to the North Central Texas Trauma Regional Advisory Council, there were 22 adult ICU beds available in Dallas County as of Monday. This is a slight decrease from when we checked in a week ago.

  • The city will begin offering vaccines at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center on Tuesday. The drive-thru vaccination site will start with second doses for first responders and city staff on Tuesday who have already had their first shot. It will open up to people who registered to receive a vaccine in Dallas County — including those who registered to receive it from the Fair Park hub — on Thursday. This comes after Mayor Eric Johnson requested the state send more vaccines to the county earlier this month.
  • In a Monday night special meeting, Dallas City Council seemed at odds again about local vaccine rollout. After ongoing confusion about vaccine availability and distribution, council members caught up to the conversations many have been having since the city began administering vaccines to the public. “If we, as duly elected city leaders, don’t know the criteria, then how can we expect our constituents to know it?” council member Casey Thomas said. Eventually, the council voted in favor of giving city manager T.C. Broadnax authorization to allow for allocating laptops, personal protection equipment and city staff to work vaccine registration stations.
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci joined Dallas megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes for a virtual panel in efforts to dispel concerns from people wary of getting vaccinated. The panel addressed hesitation by the Black community specifically, as surveys have shown Black Americans are less likely to take the vaccine, despite Black and Latino folks being disproportionately afflicted by COVID-19.
  • CVS has finished its first round of vaccines in Texas nursing homes.  As part of a federal partnership, the CVS Health program announced on Monday it had administered the first round of first dose vaccines to more than 8,000 people in Texas long-term care facilities. Walgreens expects it will have completed its first round of the same partnership this week.
  • Health officials say anyone who has been vaccinated should return to the same place they received the first dose for their second inoculation.  Those vaccinated don’t need to re-register for the second dose, however. Second doses should be received by the same manufacturer as their first shot, as well. For more information on this in North Texas, click here.
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