Contact: Melissa Sixberry, Director of Disease Control 509-249-6509
**Clinical leadership is expected to schedule time to review guidelines with staff**
Provider Alert: Update on COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution in Yakima County and Reminder on New CDC Guidelines to Reduce Quarantine
January 19, 2021
- Be aware, all people in COVID-19 vaccine Phase A—people who work in healthcare settings, people who live or work in long-term care, and first responders—are eligible to receive vaccine.
- Be aware, Washington State Department of Health (DOH) and the governor’s office have announced that the state will be moving into Tier 1 of Phase 1B.
- Be aware that many providers continue to issue inconsistent quarantine guidance. Please review the CDC guidelines to reduce quarantine that were updated on December 2, 2020.
As of January 18, 2021 Yakima, County has administered COVID-19 vaccine to 6,197 individuals. 1,515 of those have received their second dose. These numbers do not include doses that have been administered to staff and residents of long-term care facilities through the Federal Pharmacy Partnership. At this point in time, Yakima continues to receive limited supply, in varying amounts, on a weekly basis.
According to Washington State Department of Health, at least 150,000 Phase A providers have not yet received the COVID-19 vaccine. Providers who have not been vaccinated are strongly encouraged to schedule an appointment and get vaccinated right away. Any Phase A1 or A2 provider that is seeking a vaccine, may visit the Yakima Health District’s website to see a current list of providers currently scheduling for COVID-19 vaccination.
Millions of people in Washington are anxiously awaiting their turn in line for the vaccine, and that means we all need to ramp it up. The state prioritized healthcare providers and first responders to receive the vaccine first because of the risk endured every day and the critical role you play in keeping this state healthy. Let’s honor that and fill out phase 1a as soon as we can.
Thank you for all you’ve done fighting this pandemic with us every day and thank you in advance for taking this important action as well.
Phase 1B Announced
On Monday, January, 18, 2021, Governor Inslee announced that the entire state of Washington was transitioning to Phase 1B, Tier 1. He also announced a change in Phase 1B, Tier 1 to now include anyone over 65 years of age as well as those that are 50 and older living in multi-generational households. Washington State Department of Health also provided a more specific definition for those who are in multi-generational households to include a person over 50 who:
• Cannot live independently and receives long-term care from a relative, caregiver (paid or unpaid), or someone who works outside the home
• Lives with and cares for a young child like grandparent/grandchild
For a list of facilities that are currently scheduling COVID-19 vaccine appointments, community members should visit the Yakima Health District website.
Updated Quarantine Guidelines
Yakima County has changed quarantine guidance for contacts of COVID-19 cases to align with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For those who are able, quarantining for 14 days is still the safest option to prevent the spread of COVID-19. People who do not develop symptoms—and for whom a 14-day quarantine poses economic or mental health hardship—have 2 additional options.
- Quarantine can end after day 10 without testing and if no symptoms have been reporting during daily monitoring.
- When diagnostic testing resources are sufficient and available, then quarantine can end after day 7 if a diagnostic specimen tests negative and if no symptoms were reported during daily monitoring. The specimen may be collected and tested within 48 hours before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation (day 5 or day 6), but quarantine cannot be discontinued earlier than day 7.
- It is critical to monitor for symptoms through day 14, even when following a shortened quarantine.
- If an individual develops symptoms, they should immediately isolate and get tested.
Patient education for “When to quarantine?” from the CDC can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/quarantine.html
Providers are urged to reinforce masking and social distancing recommendations with patients. Providers should review documents below with patients and provide a copy to take home at the time of evaluation. Positive cases should also be advised to notify close contacts and provide them with education below for “exposed”.
For symptoms—What to do if you have symptoms of COVID-19 and have not been around a person diagnosed with COVID-19.
For exposed—What to do if you may have been exposed to a person with COVID-19.
For confirmed or suspected—What to do if you have confirmed or suspected COVID-19.
Additional Resources – COVID-19 Vaccine
- Yakima County COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Web Site
- WA State Phase 1A and 1B Guidance-DOH
- WA State Tier B1 and Timeline – DOH
- COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Resources – CDC
- COVID-19 Vaccine Factsheet for Healthcare workers – CDC
- The COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence Conversation Starter for Healthcare Personnel – CDC