JCPH looks ahead to next vaccine priority group

Board of Supervisors
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     “I want to stress we’re not sitting on vaccines. We’re distributing them as fast as we can. We’re not holding vaccines back for fun.”

     Jones County Public Health (JCPH) Preparedness Specialist Kaci Ginn shared those sentiments during the Jan. 12 Jones County Supervisor meeting. She told the board that JCPH was receiving lots of phone calls, particularly from older county residents without internet access, asking for assistance in filling out the COVID-19 vaccine interest form.

     “We’ve had to adjust our workflow to get those questions answered in a timely manner,” added Ginn.

     In their weekly COVID update, JCPH stated that the county does have a sufficient number of doses to cover the healthcare professionals, with one POD clinic remaining to administer the first dose.

     “We will begin group 1B when the state permits and we receive more vaccine,” said JCPH.

     According to the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), Phase 1B is expected to transition on or about Feb. 1. That includes those 75 years and older, correctional facility staff and incarcerated individuals, staff and individuals in congregate settings, distribution and manufacturing workers, PreK-12 staff and childcare workers, first responders, and government officials.

     The IDPH is now releasing information on a weekly basis concerning how many doses of the vaccine have been administered in Iowa. As of Jan. 15, 125,776 doses have been administered; 118,991 to Iowa residents. Of those who received the vaccine, 11,559 Iowans have completed the series, meaning received both doses of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.

     Jones County has vaccinated 909 county residents. This includes those within long-term care (LTC) facilities as well.

     Ginn told the board of supervisors that 100 percent of the LTC residents in Anamosa have accepted the vaccine; she was unsure of Monticello.

     Also, as of Jan. 15, there were five people in Jones County hospitalized with the virus, and 49 total deaths. The Jones County positivity rate is 12.3 percent; Iowa’s positivity rate is 13.3 percent. In the last three days, seven COVID cases were reported; 22 cases in the last seven days.

     JCPH will be sending out a direct mailing to all addresses in the county with information about the vaccine and the link to the county form (

     Supervisor Ned Rohwedder inquired about those who have tested positive for and have had COVID, how they might react to the vaccine.

     “Are they less sensitive to the shot?” he asked.

     JCPH Coordinator Jenna Lovaas said she knows of one person who had COVID less than three months before he/she received the first dose of the vaccine “and had significant side effects.

     “But I don’t know if it matters whether they had it (coronavirus) or not,” she clarified. “It varies by person.”

     Rohwedder said he would be concerned that word-of-mouth might have a negative impact on how many people actually get the vaccine.

     “As more people get the vaccine, influential people, that will help build confidence in the vaccine,” said Ginn.


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