Roughly 700 doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are expected to arrive in Ketchikan this month. That’s enough to begin vaccinating about a third of the eligible senior population, state Public Health nurse manager Theresa Ruzek said last Friday.
“I understand that people really want to get this vaccine and I am so glad that people want to do this for themselves and the community. And we are working hard to make that happen,” Ruzek said.
The first COVID-19 vaccination clinics for eligible Alaskans will be held in Ketchikan on Thursday and next week. The Ketchikan Public Health Center has openings for Alaskans age 65 and up on January 14, 19 and 20. Health care providers unaffiliated with PeaceHealth Ketchikan Medical Center, which vaccinates its own workforce, are also eligible.
Ketchikan Emergency Operations Center spokesperson Kacie Paxton says though there is currently not enough vaccine for everyone who’s currently eligible, more doses are on the way.
“We know in receiving phone calls from seniors, there’s a lot of anxiety that there may not be enough vaccine for them, but the state wants them to know that they won’t be going on to the next tier until much of the demand for this tier has been met,” she said.
Seniors and health care providers can book appointments through a state website. Paxton says assistance is available for those who may have trouble booking.
“Then we also have a couple of local agencies who have offered to assist folks over 65 because many of them don’t have a computer. So we have a list of people who have offered to assist and answer questions when trying to schedule a vaccine,” Paxton said.
Staff are available to assist with the online registration process at the Ketchikan Public Library, Community Connections and Rendezvous Senior Day Services. Enrolled tribal members of Ketchikan Indian Community or the Organized Village of Saxman can contact the Ketchikan Indian Community Clinic to schedule an appointment.
In addition to the Public Health clinics in Ketchikan, eligible Alaskans can schedule appointments through Safeway Pharmacy, Island Pharmacy and Northway Family Healthcare.
How to schedule an appointment:
- Schedule an appointment online at http://covidvax.alaska.gov
- Members of the Ketchikan Indian Community or Saxman tribal citizens may call the Ketchikan Indian Community Clinic at 907-228-9200.
- Call 907-646-3322 for assistance with scheduling an appointment.
Leave a message with your name, location, phone number, and someone will return your call.
- Call one of the following local agencies for assistance with scheduling an appointment.
- Ketchikan Public Library
- Community Connections is available to assist its clientele.
- Rendezvous Senior Services is available to assist its clientele.
Please note that the current vaccine quantity and available appointment times are limited. Public Health has ordered additional quantity of the vaccine with the goal that additional clinics can be scheduled later in the month.
Information on the COVID-19 vaccine in Alaska is available at: http://covidvax.alaska.gov
- Email: email@example.com
KRBD’s Eric Stone contributed reporting.