LOCAL VACCINE UPDATE: New information on vaccine distribution and FAQs
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) —Lincoln Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and local health officials update the community on our fight against the COVID-19 pandemic at 3:30 p.m.
We’ll be streaming it live right here on klkntv.com.
(402)441-8006 IS THE NUMBER TO CALL ONLY IF YOU DON’T HAVE INTERNET ACCESS OR NEED LIVE PERSON HELP REGISTERING
Live updates below, all times are Central.
4:15 pm – Director Lopez said if an appointment is scheduled, it is just for that person, not family members or spouses – ONLY that person.
4:14 pm – How many people will be helping? The health department usually has 80-100 people but plans to ramp that up. Pinnacle Bank Arena will supplement another 40-50 to help people in the garage, getting them where they need to do, push wheelchairs, and any other mobility issues that might arise.
4:11 pm – Channel 8 asked what about people who can’t get to PBA? Director Lopez answered in part “We’re looking at each situation and their availability of PBA, and where we are out in the community and I just want to correct something for as many people maybe who have a concern about PBA, we have heard from an equal number of people that are really pleased that we’re using PPB, I think it will work well. But we’re constantly looking we’re looking at a site and North link and right now we’re looking at another site in South Lincoln so as far as vaccine is available.”
People are being scheduled in increments. This is not a come between 8 am – 3 pm, you should have a specific time. Call (402)441-8006 if you are confused about this or feel you were given conflicting information.
4:05 pm – All EMTs have received both doses of vaccine.
4:00 pm – When asked about the hiccups in the process of scheduling appointments, Lopez said “I also think it was because people were so anxious to get registered. So the next time we send out a message we’ll be doing it a little bit differently and staggering the timeframe for how we send the messages out in assisting individuals. We also are making calls to individuals I don’t think people realize that there are some individuals that don’t have e-mail or can’t receive text messages so we’re contacting them directly to schedule their appointments. So, while was really a challenge this morning and not one we wanted to see, I have to tell you that you know it’s been really running very smoothly since 11 o’clock about 11 o’clock this morning, and all of our staff have said, How happy people are you know it’s an indicator of how, how much people want to get this vaccine in our community, which is a very great thing, but we’re planning for it to be much smoother for them in the future to be able to register.”
3:58 pm – Lopez: “We are on the verge of getting the upper hand on this virus. Vaccinating Lancaster County residents will take time and we urge everyone to be patient and continue to take precautions to protect themselves and others.”
Current restrictions in the MID-ORANGE ZONE are in effect until February 20.
3:55 pm – Lopez: “Looking at the seven day rolling average of new cases shows the overall decline through January. The average look took a big drop from 144 on January, 22, to just 78 on January, 30. We also continue to see a decline in the number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized. From December through January 20 hospitalizations stay at about 100 patients per day for about two weeks now we’ve been seeing a steady decline. Today we are reporting 55 patients hospitalized with 38 from Lancaster County, and 70 from other communities. This is the lowest number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized since 52 patients were reported back on October 15.”
3:54 pm – The LLCHD Risk Dial is now MID orange, for the first time since October 2.
3:49 pm – Pat Lopez is speaking again. “We look forward to vaccinating those and other priority groups and phase one being as soon as we have more vaccine available. Our priority will remain with those who are in that age group of 65 and older. Last Friday we held a clinic for some of the final groups of health care providers in phase one and vaccinated just over 2400 people.”
3:42 pm – Tom Lorenz from Pinnacle Bank Arena is now speaking.
Location free parking options include the Pinnacle Bank Arena Premium Garage. That’s the garage just to the west of the arena, it’s attached to the arena.
Lorenz said regarding parking, “The garage access is from Arena Drive, that’s the large 4 lane access road to the west of the arena. Our staff will greet you at the garage entrance. Once inside, it’s easy to access from your car or truck directly into the arena staff will direct you to elevators that take you to the main lobby where the clinic is situated.
Additional free parking is available in Lincoln’s Red Deck One parking garage directly across the street, south of the arena. You can park on any floor and take the elevator down to street level.
The street directly to the South of Pinnacle Bank Arena is R Street, we will close our street to through traffic, so it’s easy and safe to cross the street from Red Deck One Garage directly into the Pinnacle Bank Arena Box Office where the clinic entrance is located.
If you are being dropped off by a family member or friend, they can let our street attendant know so they can pull inside the closed street area close to the box office entrance. So our senior guests can get inside quickly. Pinnacle Bank Arena was built to be ADA accessible. We have planned with the health department to make this clinic set all on the main floor, easy to navigate with no stairways, we will have lots of helpful staff to guide you from parking into the arena, and through the vaccination process.”
3:41 pm – The Friday clinic is not open to the public. You need to have an appointment to go.
“We plan to make adjustments to our clinic process depending on the needs of the priority group being vaccinated, and the number of people we intend to accommodate because the group being vaccinated Friday will be some of our oldest residents. We are taking steps to provide extra support and assistance vaccinations will take place on the lower level of the arena online and wheelchairs will be available for those who need them, a family member or caregiver as Welcome to accompany the person receiving the vaccine to the process. We will also have extra staff available to help those who may need additional assistance.”
3:40pm – Director Lopez “We were eager to take this next step. Every dose of vaccine helps protect more residents and our community based one of the includes people 65 years old and above. And those 18 years and older with underlying medical conditions, as well as essential workers here in Lancaster County, we will start the 1B vaccinations, with our residents, age, 80, and above, at a clinic on Friday at Pinnacle Bank Arena.”
4600 people have gotten a phone call about scheduling an appointment. The hotline number is not the same as the COVID-19 hotline, and excessive calls lead to call overload. 66,000 people called the appointment number.
3;39 pm – Health Director Pat Lopez is speaking.
3:37 pm – “The state determines the number of vaccine doses allocated to our local health department each week, based on the supply available to Nebraska. The state has told Lincoln and Lancaster County that we can expect to receive about 3900 doses per week for the time being, although we are hopeful that that number may go up in the coming weeks. If Moderna or Pfizer increased production or the new vaccine received emergency use authorization.”
“In the meantime, we continue to make great progress with the vaccine doses we do receive our health department in collaboration with our wonderful community partners, quickly, efficiently and safely vaccinated about 4800 healthcare workers. During the first two mass vaccination clinics at Pinnacle Bank Arena.”
3:35pm Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird, “As we undertake the gargantuan task of vaccinating our entire community people naturally want to know where they fit into this effort. People want to know when and where they will appear on the COVID-19 vaccination schedule.” Go to covid19.vaccine.gov for this information, which is subject to change.
3:34pm – Mayor is addressing concerns on “where we fit in the order of things around us” when it comes to vaccines.
3:33pm – News conference begins.