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Local 5 - weareiowa.com | Des Moines Local News & Weather | Des Moines, Iowa

IDPH launches new website to find COVID vaccine providers

Starting March 8, elder Iowans will be able to call 2-1-1 to speak with a "vaccine navigator", who will gather their information and schedule an appointment.

FAST FACTS:

  • Iowans 65 and up will be able to schedule a vaccine appointment over the phone by calling 2-1-1 starting the week of March 8
  • vaccinate.iowa.gov, a statewide vaccine information website to find providers and locations, launched Friday
  • VaccineFinder.org is a tool set up by national partners to help find vaccine availability across the United States by zip code.
  • Demand is still far outpacing supply, so providers are urging patience

DES MOINES, Iowa — Iowans 65 years and older will finally be able to schedule COVID-19 vaccine appointments over the phone starting the week of March 8, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Thursday

Elder Iowans will be able to call 2-1-1 to speak with a "vaccine navigator" who will ask the person some questions and take basic information to schedule an appointment at a nearby Hy-Vee pharmacy

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School and Castlight Health have also created a new website to help track vaccine availability.

Vaccinate.iowa.gov launched Friday, a new website from the Iowa Department of Public Health to help locate vaccine providers across the state. You still must visit an individual provider's website to schedule an appointment.

"Not all providers may have vaccines at the time you visit the website," the site notes. "We encourage Iowans remain patient as more vaccine arrives in the weeks and months ahead."

Previous updates

Feb. 3, 2021

More vaccine doses were made available Wednesday in an effort to help those 65 and up struggling to get appointments. 

The Iowa Department of Public Health reallocated 32,000 doses from the Long-Term Care Pharmacy Partnership Program, the federal nursing home vaccination program the state took part in. 

This is a one-time allocation using the leftover supply from that program.

The state allocated 14,000 doses for seniors 65 and older in Polk County. As a result, the Polk County Health Department is able to shift next week's allotment to educators in the county.

Appointments for Feb. 8-12 for county educators will take place in a drive-thru clinic on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

There will be NO appointments available to the community at noon on Friday, Feb. 5. The open appointments to the public will resume Feb. 12 at noon.

Educators and seniors can also continue to access vaccines through HyVee and Medicap pharmacies, visit www.immunizepolk.org to access online scheduling for all vaccine distribution sites.

Starting Wednesday, Walgreens in select counties will begin taking appointments for Iowans age 65 and older to get a vaccine. 

Register for Walgreens appointments here. View the Walgreens registration guide here.

Counties where Walgreens is getting extra doses

  • Black Hawk
  • Cerro Gordo
  • Des Moines
  • Dubuque
  • Johnson
  • Linn
  • Polk
  • Pottawattamie
  • Scott
  • Woodbury

CVS in select counties will do the same starting Thursday.

Register for CVS appointments here. View the CVS registration guide here.

Counties where CVS is getting extra doses

  • Black Hawk
  • Dallas
  • Linn
  • Polk

Hy-Vee will soon get direct vaccine shipments

Starting next week, Hy-Vee announced they'll start getting direct vaccine shipments from the federal government. 

“Through our preparation efforts, we have the ability to start vaccinating eligible populations less than 24 hours after receiving allocations," Hy-Vee chairman and CEO Randy Edeker said in a press release Tuesday night. "The issue to date has been demand far exceeding supply, and we believe this partnership helps strengthen our advocacy efforts to receive more of the vaccine.”

RELATED: Hy-Vee included in federal pharmacy vaccination program

Coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients said starting next week some 6,500 pharmacies around the country will receive a total of 1 million doses of vaccine.

The number of participating pharmacies, and the allocation of vaccines, are expected to accelerate as drugmakers increase production.

Iowa is currently in Phase 1B - Tier 1

Iowa officially started vaccinating those eligible in Phase 1B on Monday, Feb. 1.

Demand for the vaccine, however, is far outpacing supply and county public health leaders are urging patience when trying to schedule appointments.

Phase 1B is split into five tiers, but those 65 years and older can get vaccinated throughout the entire phase.

Credit: WOI/Iowa Dept. of Public Health
This illustration shows who is included in the different tiers of Iowa's Phase 1B vaccination plan, set to begin Feb. 1

Below is a look at vaccine allocation since Dec. 14. 

The Moderna vaccine wasn't shipped during the first week because the FDA hadn't approved for emergency use yet.

Credit: WOI
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows how many doses have been allotted to the state since Dec. 14. Last updated on Jan. 26,

Vaccines allocated to the state then get distributed to county health departments.

These departments then determine where residents can go to get their vaccination by distributing vaccine to pharmacies and other providers. 

RELATED: ‘All Iowans that want the vaccine will receive it’: Pharmacies urge patience as state waits for supply to catch up with demand

Where to get vaccinated

Local 5 looked into several central Iowa counties to see where folks can get vaccinated. Missing one? Email news@weareiowa.com

Iowa Department of Public Health dashboard

The dashboard below lists every vaccine provider available in each county with just a click/tap. 

Local 5 has also compiled links to central Iowa county public health departments and other information to know before getting vaccinated.

NOTE: Iowans looking to get vaccinated are advised to contact their county health department and not individual clinics or facilities in order to keep phone lines clear and vaccine schedules updated. Primary care physicians are allowed to directly contact patients to schedule a vaccine appointment.

Boone County

Boone County residents who are eligible for the vaccine will be able to get their shot through Boone County Public Health and Boone County Hospital

The county has a Facebook page for residents to refer to for the latest updates on vaccine allocation and COVID-19 activity. 

Those eligible to schedule an appointment can call 515-433-8299 (VAXX). 

Dallas County

Dallas County residents have several locations to get vaccinated, four Hy-Vee locations, the Adel Health Mart Pharmacy and the Medicap Pharmacy in Dallas Center. 

The county is ready to vaccinate folks within Phase 1B. However, appointments are limited due to the low supply.

Here is the list with links to schedule an appointment: 

Appointments for the week of Feb. 1-5 are booked at the Adel Health Mart and Medicap Pharmacy. Residents can check and see if appointments are open at the other locations by visiting the Dallas County Health Department's website

Jasper County

The Jasper County Public Health website lists two locations for folks 65 and older to get vaccinated. 

Appointments can be made at the Medicap Pharmacy in Newton by clicking/tapping this link

The Newton Clinic is also administering vaccines in Jasper County. For information about the clinic's vaccine, text "covidimm" to 641-792-2112. 

More updates can be found on the department's Facebook page.

Madison County

The Madison County Public Health department is updating residents on vaccine information via their Facebook page

Local 5 could locate a list of locations for residents to be vaccinated but did find that Medicap - Central Iowa will offer appointments. 

However, they are booked for the first week of February.

The department posted a list of places to keep tabs on for further updates on vaccine appointments and news:

Marion County

Marion County is vaccinating residents with the Moderna vaccine by appointment only. The county's health department is administering the doses to community members that are eligible for them. 

The county is still planning for Phase 1B vaccinations. Once they are aware of how much they are allotted, they will notify residents via social media and their website.

Those with questions can email the department at covid-19@marioncountyiowa.gov.  

Marshall County

The Marshall County Public Health Department regularly posts updates to their Facebook page on COVID-19 information. 

There are eight sites for residents to be vaccinated. The embed towards the top of this section lists out their addresses and website links to schedule an appointment.

Polk County

It may be a while before all eligible residents are vaccinated in Iowa's largest county. The Polk County Health Department began vaccinating those 65 years and older on Jan. 21. 

The county has 16 locations for folks to be vaccinated. Appointments can be made with the health department or other pharmacy partners with the links below: 

First responders and PreK-12 school staff can be vaccinated starting Feb. 1. However, appointments for that week were booked within 10 minutes.  

The department asks residents to check on social media and the Polk County Health Department website frequently for updates.

On Saturday, Feb. 6, Broadlawns Medical Center will hold a vaccine clinic at the Broadlawns Medical Plaza. 

Due to the limited supply of the vaccine, the hospital will begin scheduling appointments at 8 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 3. Anyone in Phase 1B Tier 1 can call 515-282-8935 to schedule an appointment.

Appointments are for existing Broadlawns patients or Polk County residents. 

Story County

Story County Public Health lists several locations on its website for where residents can get the vaccine. 

More updates from the department can be found on the Mary Greeley Medical Center's Facebook page. 

Warren County

Warren County Health Services has an online OneDrive folder with important information on COVID-19 vaccinations for the county. 

Residents can also keep tabs on vaccine information by checking the department's Facebook page

The Associated Press contributed to this report.