Local providers are gearing up for increased COVID-19 vaccine demand now that, as of Monday morning, anyone deemed safe to be vaccinated by the CDC — individuals 16 and up — is eligible to receive it.
The announcement from Gov. Kay Ivey came Friday, three days before the new phase would kick in. Now that any adult can get vaccinated according to Alabama Department of Public Health guidelines, securing a vaccination is solely a matter of local availability.
In Dadeville, Lake Martin Community Hospital started offering vaccines to anyone 16 and up as of Monday, Ivy Creek Healthcare marketing director Heidi Smith confirmed.
Lake Martin Community Hospital refreshed its Pfizer vaccine supply last month and before Monday had been filling demand with relative ease. Last week, the hospital encouraged locals to make an appointment on its Facebook page, stating "We have openings and you could get in as early as today!"
Smith said Ivy Creek expects vaccine demand will be up this week.
"At this point, we are waiting to see how it all pans out," she said. "Hopefully it will all work out. We are sure it will be busy."
Russell Medical Center, however, is still awaiting its next shipment. The hospital gave its last batch of first doses at a mobile clinic at Edward Bell Career Technical Center in Camp Hill Friday.
"This will be the last offering of first doses of vaccines for the time being, as we will begin administering second doses to patients next week," Russell Medical announced Friday on its Facebook page. "We will publicize additional dates/times/locations for first doses in the future."
COVID-19 vaccines have also been provided in Tallapoosa County so far at Jackson Drugs, MainStreet Family Care and Walmart in Alexander City, Tallapoosa County Health Department, and as of last week, the Alex City Winn-Dixie. Vaccinations at all locations are subject to availability.