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Shasta County skilled nursing facility waits for vaccine to be available for workers and patients

Nursing homes in Shasta County are still waiting to hear when they’ll be getting the Covid-19 vaccines.

Posted: Dec 16, 2020 7:31 PM
Updated: Dec 17, 2020 10:25 AM

ANDERSON, Calif. – Nursing homes in Shasta County are still waiting to hear when they’ll be getting the Covid-19 vaccines.

Since March, Jean Howell has been stuck behind the walls of Oak River Rehab. The pandemic preventing people from visiting their loved ones.

“It's the first time in my life I haven't be able to participate with my family,” said Howell. “I couldn't even go out to get Christmas cards or anything.”

But the arrival of the vaccine has Jean optimistic for the first time in a long time.

“We're hopeful and anxious,” said Howell. “We've been so confined and can't get near our grandkids and everything. We hope that this is going to help with that.”

Shasta County already received 1950 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, but it's still unknown how much a skilled nursing facility like Oak River Rehab will be getting.

“What the county has said is that they will obviously prioritize the hospitals, the acute settings, for the first batch of vaccines,” said Greg Hollingsworth, the administrator for Oak River Rehab.

“Whatever is left over, so it doesn't go to waste, they will then distribute to skilled nursing facilities.”

Oak River Rehab signed up for a vaccine program through the CDC, which would let pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens to set up a vaccine clinic.

“Essentially, they will come in a kind of like a big RV that has the vaccines and they will do a big vaccine clinic,” said Hollingsworth.

It’s still unknown when the clinic will be set up.

Shasta County Public Health says it is in the planning stages to get skilled nursing facilities, both workers and residents vaccinated.

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It took a few hours, but the sun broke through the clouds over most of northern California Tuesday afternoon. The low clouds, fog and light rain showers return to the valley Wednesday, with snowy weather in the mountains.
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