Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Frustrations build over COVID-19 vaccine delays in Minnesota nursing homes


January 7, 2021

Glen Stubbe - Star Tribune

Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said the state's distribution of coronavirus vaccines is dependent on allocations from the federal government. The state expects older Minnesotans and essential workers to begin receiving first doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines in early February, dependent on supplies. ORG XMIT: MIN2011161615510326

Only 7,400 COVID-19 vaccine shots have been given to residents and workers at Minnesota nursing homes in the past week despite a targeted campaign that gave them first priority for vaccinations.

The slow pace has stemmed from bottlenecks in the patchwork distribution system, particularly with the large pharmacy chains that were tapped by the federal government to deliver the shots in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities. Those pharmacy chains, CVS Health and Walgreens, lacked the technicians to administer the vaccines quickly, which has resulted in unexpectedly long waits for the shots to arrive.

Across the state, some long-term care providers have turned to local pharmacies in a push to get vulnerable residents and staff inoculated as quickly as possible, industry representatives say.


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