ARCNWS-02-04-21 COMMISH

RANDOLPH COUNTY — Vaccine distribution continues in Randolph County, albeit far slower than health officials would like.

Randolph County Commissioner Hope Haywood updated those in attendance at the February meeting of the board of commissioners on Monday how the county’s providers are seeking to partner in the endeavor. Haywood spoke of a collaboration between Randolph County Public Health and the county’s hospital, Randolph Health, to improve a system and allow residents to sign up online.

Primarily, Haywood says, the most pressing issue is that the state’s vaccine supply doesn’t meet the demand of county residents.

“It’s a process,” Haywood said. “There’s nothing perfect out there. We’re doing our very, very best. I assure you that your providers in Randolph County are working together to try and meet the needs of our citizens as quickly as we can.”

The state has assured the health department that the county will receive the same amount of the vaccine for three weeks. According to Susan Hayes, Randolph’s public health director, she expected that amount to be 600 doses per week, though the state provided an extra 100 doses for the last week of January.

“For the vaccine that we got this week, we were notified last Thursday how much vaccine we will get,” Hayes said. “On Friday, we opened our appointment line at 8:30. By 4:30, we had taken 700 appointments.”

As of 4 p.m. Jan. 29, 2,802 individuals had received the first dose of the vaccine in Randolph County. Of those, 364 had completed the vaccine series.

Meanwhile, the death toll continues to rise. As of press time, 179 county residents of the 11,508 who tested positive had died from COVID-19, per the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services dashboard.

Staff writer Daniel Kennedy can be reached at 336-888-3578, or at dkennedy@atnonline.net.

Staff writer Daniel Kennedy can be reached at 336-888-3578, or at dkennedy@atnonline.net.