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State plans for COVID booster shots once approved by CDC, signs order for vaccine providers

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HERSHEY, DAUPHIN COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Acting Health Secretary Alison Beam and Acting Physician General Dr. Denise Johnson are joining vaccine providers to discuss the state’s plans for COVID-19 vaccine boosters once approved by CDC.

Beam signed an order to ensure that COVID vaccine providers are well prepared to begin administering booster shots as soon as the CDC issues the necessary guidance.

To help solidify the preparation for booster shots, the order will require vaccine providers to:

  • Provide online scheduling for vaccination appointments
  • Provide a telephone number, with prompts to a live agent during normal business hours, to assist in scheduling appointments
  • Offer walk-in appointments
  • Work with local Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) and Medical Assistance Managed Care Organizations (MCO) to help schedule eligible adults and people who cannot leave their homes.

“These four basic steps are not new concepts in fact they mirror orders issued previously in the initial rollout of the vaccine,” Beam said. “Dedicated vaccine providers helped get us to the point we are today.”

Currently boosters are available for those who are immunocompromised.

Federal guidance is expected Thursday regarding administration of COVID-19 vaccine booster shots.

There are currently more than 2,000 vaccine providers across the state with COVID-19 vaccine inventory. To date, vaccine providers have administered 12.6 million total vaccine doses. More than 6.1 million Pennsylvanians are fully vaccinated; with a seven-day moving average of more than 15,600 people per day receiving vaccinations.

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