Alexandria aims to adjust vaccination efforts as city moves into next phase

Alexandria is gearing up to move into the next phase of vaccination later this month, and the city’s Health Department is getting ready to launch some new programs and make adjustments to help make getting the shot a little easier.

So far, around 47,434 Alexandrians have been partially vaccinated, and 26,717 have been fully vaccinated. The target goal is 80% of the city vaccinated (106,618 people).

The city moved into Phase 1c earlier this week. Natalie Talis, population health manager for the Alexandria Health Department, said the city will be moving into Phase 2 of vaccination by April 18.

“We will be launching new options for people to schedule appointments directly, and we believe that transition will help reduce any confusion connected to who is eligible when,” Talis said. “Our focus will be how we can continue to prioritize people in Phase 1a, 1b, and 1c even after we move to a more open process. And of course, we are always evaluating new strategies for reaching our historically underserved populations so that they don’t fall through the cracks.”

The city launched a new vaccination clinic in the Victory Center on Eisenhower Avenue, part of a partnership with Inova and Fairfax County. The center added substantial capacity to the city’s vaccination efforts, but progress was capped by the trickle of vaccine supply.

Talis said that’s continued to increase in the weeks since the state began moving through the sub-phases of vaccination. While the city had been receiving around 2,000 or 3,000 doses of the vaccine per week in March, this week the city received 10,010 doses, with potential to 7,000 more.

“Our supply has definitely increased, which is why we have been able to move to 1c and will be able to move to Phase 2,” Talis said. “Previously, supply around the state was determined by population size, but it really needed to consider the demand from each community. Alexandrians have a high demand for vaccination, and now, our supply is starting to catch up with that.”

Talis said AHD has contacted everyone from Phase 1a and 1b, and many from 1c, who pre-registered by April 6.

“We continue to get new pre-registrations everyday but the increased supply has helped tremendously in addressing the waitlist,” Talis said.

A full list of who is eligible under the first phase of the vaccine is available online and residents can pre-register for Phase 2 online.

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