CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - Chesterfield County Public Schools told its teachers and staff that there has been a delay in vaccinating most employees due to supply issues with the COVID-19 vaccine.
CCPS said the Chesterfield Health District placed an order for 8,000 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine last week.
School officials said the county government estimated that at least half of that order would arrive this week, so vaccination clinics for Cohort No. 1 and elementary school staff members were planned.
“Unfortunately, we are at the mercy of others at the state level as to when we receive the number of shots that we need. I regret that I have to share the supply chain outside of CCPS has not delivered,” a letter to employees said.
The first shipment of the shots arrived Monday and only contained 1,000 doses, and the county government is only giving the school division 750 of those doses for staff, CCPS said.
“Obviously, 750 shots will not meet the needs identified in the plan we shared Friday. As a result, we will have to temporarily delay our school-based vaccine clinics. Cohort No. 1 school-based staff, Juvenile Detention Home staff and Transportation’s Area 5 staff members will receive the first dose of their vaccination later this week,” the letter said.
CCPS administrators say they have asked the Virginia Department of Health and Virginia Department of Education to intercede and help meet the needs of the division.
The letter said the health district planned to place another large order on Tuesday with the hope that more vaccines will arrive next week. The district says as shots become available, the distribution timeline may be very fluid so employees may not receive much notice before getting the shot.
In the meantime, the division said there are no plans to delay the elementary students returning for in-person learning on Feb. 1, “as the decision to return these students to in-person learning was made before we even knew vaccines might be available in Chesterfield.”
In a statement to NBC 12 the Chesterfield Health District wrote:
“Supply is extremely limited and allocations change frequently to reflect that. We’ve said it numerous times: demand is greatly outpacing supply. It is safe to say that all Americans—hospitals, private providers, pharmacies, and local health departments—want more doses than are currently available. Our allocation process is focused on ensuring equity and efficiency, and that will not change.”
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