Teachers become eligible for vaccines


Teachers, school staff and child care workers in Indiana are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine via the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program. 

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki reported in a press briefing Wednesday that the program would start next week.

Through this initiative, teachers will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine from Kroger, Meijer and Walmart after the federal government ordered participating pharmacies to prioritize teachers.

Appointments have to be made through the website of a participating pharmacy. Some pharmacies have been having trouble updating their sites to allow teachers to be prioritized for vaccines. 

For teachers 50 and older, they can schedule a vaccine appointment through state clinics since they are eligible by Indiana guidelines.

To schedule an appointment, if eligible, and receive information about COVID-19 vaccinations, visit ourshot.in.gov.

On Thursday, the Indiana State Department of Health announced 4,651 Jackson County residents have tested positive for COVID-19, an increase of one from Wednesday’s total.

The positivity rate for Jackson County remains unchanged from Wednesday at 2.6%, according to the department’s COVID-19 dashboard.

The rate is determined by a seven-day moving average with a six-day lag to give time to receive comprehensive results. The current positivity rate for the county would be for Feb. 19 to 25.

Jackson County is classified as a level 0.5 county and is a blue level threat. To be a blue level threat, a county must maintain a positivity rate lower than 5%.

No new deaths attributed to COVID-19 were reported in Jackson County on Wednesday. That leaves the county’s death toll at 67.

There have been 49,923 COVID tests administered to 17,639 individuals in the county since March 18, 2020, an increase of 349 from Wednesday’s total.

The latest results are as of 11:59 p.m. Wednesday. The coronavirus dashboard is updated at noon daily.

According to the state’s COVID-19 vaccination dashboard, 6,965 or 15.7% of 44,231 Jackson County residents have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 4,132 or 9.3% of county residents have been fully vaccinated.

This is an increase of 102 county residents receiving their first dose since Tuesday. Two hundred ninety-eight more have been fully vaccinated.

Since Dec. 14, 1,061,173 Hoosiers have received their first dose, while 633,123 are fully vaccinated.

On Thursday, 962 additional Hoosiers across the state were diagnosed with COVID-19 through testing at the ISDH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and private laboratories.

This brings the total number of Hoosiers known to have had the novel coronavirus to 664,446 following corrections to the previous day’s total.

The state’s total number of deaths attributed to COVID-19 is 12,231 with 32 new deaths being reported Thursday.

For the state, a total of 8,133,596 tests have been administered, an increase of 40,693 from Wednesday’s total.

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