COVID-19 Vaccine Updates & Resources

Teton Valley Health will be providing periodic updates in regards to the COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID-19 Vaccine Update – January 15, 2021

  • Approvals – Only Pfizer and Moderna have EUA’s in the US.  Astro Zeneca is not scheduled for review yet.
  • Second doses – Until and if the FDA modifies the EUA’s we will be giving second doses to everyone who got a first dose.  Second doses ideally are administered from 4 days before the due date (21 days after first dose for Pfizer, 28 days for Moderna) through 1 day after.  Even if delayed beyond that the second dose should be given.  The second dose must be the same brand as the first dose.  As of 1/11, the Federal government will no longer “hold” the second dose and will distribute all “held” second doses.  The presumption is that supplies will be sufficient to administer second doses in a timely fashion.
  • Priorities – we are currently in Phase 1a (Health Care Workers & Long Term Care Facility Residents — attached is current list.  Please note that the current list is outdated in defining the phases).  The state goal is to move the entire state through Phase 1a before moving any part of the state to Phase 1b (Essential Workers & Older Adults).  The state COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee (CVAC) committee, which determines priorities within Idaho, met 1/8 to revise priorities and the governor authorized adding those 65 and older to the Phase 1b list on 1/12.  The governor stated we will vaccinate first responders, K-12 teachers and staff, and frontline essential workers from January 1 until January 31st, then add individuals 65+ to the vaccination list as of February 1.
  • Administration – Public health will be giving the remainder of Teton county vaccinations for those in category 1a.  Broulims, Corner, and TVH will assist in the administration of 1b and beyond.  Anyone in category 1a should call EIPH to get scheduled (208-533-3235).
  • Reaction Rates — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said at present it looks like anaphylaxis cases (allergic reactions) are occurring at a rate of about 11.1 per 1 million vaccine doses given, though the agency cautioned that figure may change as the vaccination effort continues.  They recommend urging all sites where Covid-19 vaccines are being administered to be ready to handle anaphylaxis cases, including having epinephrine at the ready.  TVH staff are prepared and trained to handle anaphylaxis cases.  People who have been vaccinated should stay to be monitored for 15 minutes if they have no history of allergic reactions and 30 minutes if they do.  There was no geographic clustering of cases and people who developed anaphylaxis were not all vaccinated from the same batch of vaccine, suggesting whatever is causing the reaction was not limited to a single batch of product.
  • Status – We have administered doses to all but a few TVH employees who requested vaccine and are at 70% acceptance.  Calderwood is complete.  EMS is complete.  Corner is complete, Broulims is doing Broulims pharmacy.  We are working through PT, OT, and ST.  Public health is working through emergency responders and dental.  TVH is scheduled to begin inoculating teachers Monday, 1/18.
  • Availability – limited.  The state does not know until the end of the prior week how many doses it will get.  Current estimates are 20k doses per week for Idaho.  EIPH got 2,075 doses this week.  Distribution of vaccines will be done based on population for Phase 1b, although this will probably be augmented by percent of doses administered and reported into the state tracking system.
  • Hospital capacity in the panhandle at 100% of ICU capacity, better in other areas.  The effects of positive case identification typically impact hospitalizations 10-12 days after they are first identified.
  • Positivity rates – Week of Jan. 4 – 27%.  We believe that to be the beginning of the holiday surge and will closely monitor.  We review positives for use in scheduling therapeutics.
  • Vaccination Plan – there is no written plan that has been developed by EIPH since numbers of vaccines are unknown.  We are building a plan for schools and 65+.
  • Variants (particularly UK and South African) – Many cases of a COVID-19 virus variant first found in the U.K. have been identified in the U.S.. There is now an Ohio variant and others are expected.  Vaccine vendors are testing against the variants to determine if it reduces efficacy.  We have no evidence that it does change efficacy.
    Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine appears to neutralize a mutation found in the U.K. and South Africa variants of the coronavirus, according to research published Jan. 7 on preprint server bioRxivThe findings suggest the vaccine neutralizes the N501Y mutation found in more infectious variants. The study has not yet been peer-reviewed.
  • Callback lists – Given the changing priorities and long lead times for general population we are not maintaining a callback/I want the vaccine list.  EIPH does maintain a list and people can call them if they want to be on a list (208-533-3235).  We are told that the state will have a single list available to the public starting 1/18.
  • Cost – Vaccine is free to all, administration fee will be charged to those with health insurance, forgiven for those without health insurance.
  • Time constraints – Once either a 10 dose Moderna or 6 does Pfizer vial is pierced (first used) we have six hours to complete use of the vial.    Other time frames apply prior to the vial being pierced, but given the demand far outstripping supply they are not impacting distribution to TVH.


COVID-19 Vaccine Update – January 04, 2021

Teton Valley Health is progressing through the Idaho priority list that appears on our social media. The first week we received 65 doses and these were given to healthcare personnel at TVH. We then received 50 doses which were given to TVH employees and other healthcare workers in the first priority group. Eastern Idaho Public Health also vaccinated people in the first priority group over the last several weeks. Please check our Instagram and Facebook accounts, where we will post which group we are vaccinating each week and a time and place to arrive when we start to vaccinate the public. Please note that the state estimates that we will not get to the second group until February.