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Health officials say the COVID-19 vaccine delayed shipments to Idaho

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It will delay some vaccination efforts around the state.

Public health officials say extreme winter weather across the United States could hinder the shipment of coronavirus vaccines to Idaho this week, delaying vaccination efforts.

The news was also announced on Friday by Idaho Ministry of Health officials. A man in Idaho is infected with a variant Of the first coronavirus detected in South Africa. This variant, which is considered more infectious and potentially more virulent than the strains already prevalent in Idaho, has been reported in 19 cases found in 10 other states so far. .. This is the first time a South African variant has been identified in Idaho.

The man has recently traveled abroad and is believed to have been exposed before returning to Idaho, the state’s Ministry of Health and Southwestern health officials said. Authorities worked to identify people who may have had close contact with infected men.

Public health officials are concerned because South African variants contain mutations in the characteristic peplomer of viruses targeted by existing vaccines. Two other variants (one first discovered in California and one in the United Kingdom) were also recently found in wastewater tested from several cities in Ada County.

“I wouldn’t be surprised to find the virus in Idaho,” state epidemiologist Dr. Christine Hahn said in a prepared statement. “As I learned from Boise City Wastewater test program Mutant strains arrived in the state this week. We remind Aida Juan to wear a mask, keep a physical distance, wash his hands frequently, and stay home when he is ill. In addition to being vaccinated when available, these actions are the best we can do now. “

However, some residents of Idaho may have temporarily postponed vaccination appointments. Like many other states in Idaho, shipments in Idaho were delayed due to harsh winter weather, Idaho Health and Welfare spokesman Zachary Clark confirmed on Friday.

It has several vaccine providers scrambling to ensure that people can get their second shot on time. The second vaccination is required for the recipient to be fully vaccinated and should be given within a strict time frame of 5 weeks after the first vaccination with the Moderna vaccine and about 3 weeks after the first vaccination with the Pfizer vaccine. It has become. However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that booster shots can be safely delayed in extreme situations.

Primary Health Medical Group, Idaho’s largest independent medical group, Lending about 1,400 moderna doses You don’t have to go to Idaho’s largest hospital system to ensure that people will receive a second dose this weekend at the St. Luke’s Health System.

Anitaxse, a spokeswoman for St. Luke’s, said that when the weather improved and shipments were delayed, St. Luke’s would return the same dose to primary health. She said the hospital system appreciates primary health’s willingness to “share this valuable resource and reach out for help.”

According to Clark, delayed administration in Idaho was thought to still be stored in the facility where it was manufactured, so authorities do not consider it at risk of corruption.

Sarah Leeds, manager of the Idaho vaccination program, said state health officials held a daily weather conference with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to determine when delayed vaccines would arrive in Idaho. Said that.

“We’re really, really staying there,” Leeds told members of the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Board on Friday afternoon. “We know that many providers have important appointments to reschedule if there are no shipments by Monday.”

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