In mid-December, the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation received enough Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for just over 2,000 people to receive two doses of the vaccine. By the end of the year, about 1,120 people in the region had been vaccinated with at least one dose. YKHC is continuing to vaccinate people against the virus into the new year.
YKHC received the vaccine allocations from the State of Alaska and the Indian Health Service. The health corporation said that it does not know when it will receive another vaccine shipment, or how many doses such a shipment would contain. YKHC is issuing the vaccine to specific groups of people in phases that “seek to preserve life and functions of society,” according to a health corporation press release.
Currently eligible to receive a vaccine are people in Phase 1A: residents of the Bethel Elder’s Home, front-line health care workers, and front-line EMS and fire service workers. YKHC is contacting everyone in these groups to schedule a vaccination.
Around 650 people across these groups had been vaccinated by the end of December, leaving approximately 590 people remaining, some of whom had refused the vaccine.
The second group currently eligible to receive the vaccine in the region are people in Phase 1B: Elders age 65 and older and frontline essential workers. Approximately 470 people in this phase had been vaccinated by the end of December.
If you fall into Phase 1B, here’s how to request a vaccination:
If you live in Bethel and are age 65 or older, you can call the COVID-19 hotline at 543-6949 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. YKHC recommends that if your call is not answered to leave a voicemail with your name, phone number, and date of birth. You should receive a call back within three business days.
If you are age 65 or older and live in a village, YKHC will call you to schedule a vaccination for when they travel to your village with the vaccine.
If you are a front-line essential worker living in Bethel or a village, you can fill out this online form to request a vaccination: https://tinyurl.com/y7reeyst.