The Rappahannock-Rapidan Health District, which covers Orange and Madison counties, moved into Phase 1c this week. People in several fields - including food service, finance, media, housing and construction, hairstylists, transportation, and logistics - are now eligible for their shots.
“The waitstaff and the service staff at restaurants are constantly in the public face just by the nature of their job and also tend to draw from a lot of our underserved communities and kind of lower end of the economic spectrum”,” RRHD Acting Director Colin Greene said.
Greene says enthusiasm rates for vaccines began to drop in his district, so it was time to expand to Phase 1c.
“We did have a couple of clinics that didn’t quite fill or didn’t quite fill as quickly as we’re used to, and then they did eventually fill at the last minute instead of immediately,” he said. “We actually had a couple of no-shows, which is an unusual thing in a vaccine clinic.”
On top of expanding to Phase 1c, RRHD is also working on vaccinating underserved communities.
“We’re still trying our best to focus on the remaining elderly folks that want the vaccine that haven’t gotten it yet, because they’re most at risk for death and hospitalization,” Greene said. He added that underserved communities are sometimes overlooked due to a lack of internet access.
If you’re 16 years and older, Greene advises you to preregister for the COVID-19 vaccine at Vaccinate.virginia.gov if you want to receive one.