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Vaccine distribution officially begins in Wisconsin's assisted living facilities

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Posted at 5:15 PM, Jan 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-15 18:16:33-05

The time has come for residents and staff at assisted living facilities in Wisconsin to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

On Friday, the Department of Health Services officially announced the start of vaccination distribution to the facilities across the state. The DHS says facilities will start hearing directly from pharmacies to plan their vaccination efforts in the coming days.

For pharmacies that have completed vaccinations at nursing homes, they can begin vaccinations at assisted living facilities immediately, the DHS says.

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The process is part of the Federal Pharmacy Partnership Program, which is guiding the vaccination process for long-term living facilities across the country.

Part A of the program, which brought the vaccine to skilled nursing facilities, started on Dec. 28. Part B provides doses to the remaining facilities, most prominently assisted living facilities, enrolled in the program starting Jan. 25.

The DHS says it provided 56,900 doses of the Moderna vaccine to pharmacies and provided 70,000 doses for Part B. The program will require another 70,000 doses for a total of 140,000 doses of the vaccine, according to the department.

“After careful planning and coordination, our vaccine team was able to successfully reserve enough vaccine doses to launch this program—those efforts will ensure our most vulnerable Wisconsinites are protected against COVID-19," Gov. Tony Evers said on the effort, per a statement Friday.

As of Jan. 14, 1,712 residents and 13,590 staff at skilled nursing facilities have been vaccinated. The DHS says that of the 361 eligible facilities in Part A, 261 skilled nursing facilities have now completed the first dose of the vaccine.

The department expects all participating facilities to complete the first vaccination by Jan. 18.

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