As Guadalupe County continues to give out COVID-19 vaccinations, officials are making plans to get to people who can’t get to the area’s vaccine clinics.
Homebound residents want access to potentially life-saving vaccines and county officials are assessing how they can make that possible, Guadalupe County Emergency Management Coordinator Patrick Pinder said Tuesday during a regular meeting of commissioners court.
“There is a plan in development to make sure we start getting those out,” he said. “We are starting to receive those phone calls from individuals.”
Pinder is in the process of rounding up volunteers to visit the hundreds of people unable to go to vaccine clinics that have signed up on the county’s vaccine wait list, Pinder said.
Texas has a program called Save Our Seniors that assists homebound residents with receiving vaccines in communities across the state. County Judge Kyle Kutscher would have to request state assistance for the program to operate here, Pinder said.
As part of the program, a law enforcement officer and a local emergency medical technician is assigned to state teams that operate Save Our Seniors in an area, he said. The cost of doing so could strain area resources, Kutscher said.
The emergency management office is working with local providers to take vaccines out to the public, Pinder said. Nursing staff and area church groups are expected to help volunteer, he said.
County residents receiving the doses of vaccine continually increases, Pinder said. Another clinic is scheduled for Thursday in Seguin and Schertz has one scheduled on the other side of the county, he said.
In Guadalupe County, medical professionals have administered 53,635 doses of vaccine, Pinder said Tuesday. People who had one shot amounted to 29,466 residents and 17,574 had been fully vaccinated, he said.
“It’s good to see that number has gone up a little bit since we first started to do this a couple months ago,” Pinder said.
Active cases of COVID-19 have dropped to 90 in the county, he said. Recoveries sat at 13,697. Both stats reflected information he had as of Sunday, Pinder said.
The region’s hospitalization rate is down to 4% for all 28 counties, Pinder said.
Officials encouraged residents to put their names on the Guadalupe County wait list for vaccines. Adding correct information when signing up is crucial, Pinder said.
“If you put one symbol wrong on your email, you won’t get that information,” he said. “There is a need for those folks when the wait list turns back on, make sure they put the information in there correctly.”
If the information is incorrect, the person is bumped to the rear of the list and will receive a phone call to update information, Pinder said. Making the calls is important, but also time consuming, so Pinder’s office needs help, Kutscher said.
“Resources have been stressed all around, not only at the county but the cities running distribution sites and getting people signed up,” the judge said. “Mr. Pinder and his office had a difficult time yesterday and last week getting county employees to volunteer to make calls. I’m asking county employees to pitch in.”
Volunteers can work a couple of hours, a half day or whatever fits their schedule, Kutshcer said. They can make calls intermittently while doing their regular job tasks, he said.
But the phones need to be manned and Kutscher requested help from county employes.
“There’s a tremendous need to make phone calls to schedule these people for vaccines,” he said. “Please pitch in.”