Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I wanted to take this moment to share information and resources that I’ve found helpful in cutting through the constant, and often confusing, flurry of information, updates and changes around the work to combat this pandemic.
First, be aware that starting on Monday King County will move into Phase Two of the State’s Healthy Washington plan, allowing for relaxed restrictions and additional indoor activities for some businesses – most notably restaurants, movie theaters, museums, and fitness centers. This is a welcome step, but we cannot let up on the diligent work we’ve done to mask up, physically distance and limit non-essential activities that have helped our region make progress and save lives. Read more about the decision at the Seattle Times.
Vaccine distribution remains incredibly important and an historic challenge for King County and the entire state. And while we received the good news from the Biden Administration that Washington will see an increase of vaccines sent to us by 16%, demand and need will continue to far outweigh the vaccine supply in the coming months. I hope you’ll be patient but persistent in your efforts to get vaccinated.
Resources to use right now
King County’s COVID-19 Vaccine Homepage
Public Health – Seattle & King County has created a one-stop shop for information on all things vaccines. From this page you can access WA Phase Finder to know when you are eligible to be vaccinated and also WA Vaccination Locations that will direct you to local places to be vaccinated and how to sign up. Again, bring your patience to this as vaccine supply is limited and scheduling an appointment when eligible can take time and effort.
Visit and share www.kingcounty.gov/covid/vaccine far and wide. From this page you can access WA Phase Finder to know if and when you are eligible to be vaccinated and also access WA Vaccination Locations that will direct you to local places to be vaccinated and how to sign up for a location. Again, bring your patience to this as vaccine supply is limited and scheduling an appointment when eligible can take time and effort.
Assistance for Seniors with barriers to online access
Some older adults have children, family or friends to help them navigate the online resources listed above, but many do not. Community Living Connections of Seattle & King County is stepping up to provide telephone navigation services for Seniors who need help navigating the state’s Phase Finder or scheduling a vaccination appointment.
Call their service center toll free at 1-844-348-5464 to connect with an advocate ready to help you navigate the vaccination process.
Mass vaccination clinic sign ups
Monday is also the first day that two King County mass vaccination clinics will provide vaccinations to eligible residents. Two clinics, one at the accesso ShoWare Center in Kent and the other at the General Services Administration (GSA) Complex in Auburn, expect to deliver 500 doses per day at each site. Appointments can be made on the Public Health website beginning on Saturday, January 30 at 8:00 am and are required to receive care.
Sign up for an appointment at https://kingcounty.gov/depts/health/covid-19/vaccine/distribution.aspx.
Vashon Island information and resources
The Vashon Emergency Operations Center (EOC) sends out a Situation Report twice weekly to update the community on the latest information and resources available on Vashon Island. Produced through the joint efforts of Voice of Vashon, Vashon Fire, and VashonBePrepared.org, this valuable resource includes the latest information on vaccine availability, local case counts, and volunteer activities.
Sign up to receive updates every Tuesday and Friday at www.voiceofvashon.org/alertsignup.
Get informed and engaged
King County’s Regional Vaccine Strategy
Public Health – Seattle & King County developed a framework for vaccine distribution in our region. This framework was finalized at the beginning of the year and drives decision making across the public and private sector as we navigate the uncertainty of the supply of vaccine doses coming to our region – read the plan by following this link.
And you can read the latest strategy update by clicking here.
Community Conversation – February 8th
This pandemic has disproportionally impacted BIPOC communities. We also know there is significant hesitancy from Black communities to get vaccinated, due to skepticism about safety, lack of trust in the government, and other valid concerns based on historical malpractices, policies, and deceptions. Join Black health professionals and community leaders for a community conversation on racism, medicine, COVID-19 vaccines and the Black community. Learn more about and register for this event here: https://fb.me/e/3WXwXmwCK.
Public Health Insider Blog
As I’ve shared with you before, Public Health – Seattle & King County’s Public Health Insider Blog remains a top resource for the latest information on COVID-19 developments, vaccine information and the latest public health recommendations on how to keep yourself, your family and your community safe. The latest post covering the very concerning new COVID-19 variant, first identified in the U.K., is a must read.
Thank you for reading, please share with anyone who may be looking for more information as well.
Have a safe and healthy weekend,
King County Councilmember