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CLCHD to open COVID vaccine registration to general public next week, Cheyenne VA provides vaccine update

A CLCHD Nurse gives and LCSD1 staff member the COVID vaccine in February.
A CLCHD Nurse gives and LCSD1 staff member the COVID vaccine in February.(Will Thomas)
Published: Mar. 26, 2021 at 5:37 PM CDT
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - More than 20,000 Laramie County residents have now received at least the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, and another 862 have received the Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) vaccine.

Making up for the week following the major snowstorm, the Cheyenne-Laramie County Health Department was giving around 200 vaccines a day this week. As more residents become eligible to be vaccinated, CLCHD’s Executive Director, Kathy Emmons, said it means a lot to see how thankful people are after receiving their vaccine.

“That’s been incredibly rewarding that people are starting to see the end of this, and are valuing how important the vaccines are and they’re excited about getting them.”

Emmons said these vaccinations are crucial to getting Laramie County back to normal. What will also help is, starting in April, CLCHD will be more than doubling its amount of weekly vaccine doses. The weekly combined doses from the vaccine shipments will be around 3,000 for each week of April.

“To be able to get another 12,000 individuals vaccinated is just phenomenal, and it’s really getting to that herd immunity where we’ve got so many people that are vaccinated that it’s just going to help with the economy, it’s going to help with people getting back to some semblance of normalcy.”

The large amount of vaccine that will be available allows CLCHD to open registration to the general public beginning Monday Mar. 29.

“Pretty much anybody who has a job and is over 16 years old can get a Pfizer vaccine. Anyone who’s 18 and over and has a job can get a Moderna vaccine.”

Emmons hopes residents will continue to schedule appointments to be vaccinated and hopes the vaccine campaign will be wrapped up by July.

CLCHD will also be planning to host a large scale vaccination clinic in the coming weeks. For more information on registration and where you can get your vaccination, head to CLCHD’s website here.

Speaking of vaccine distribution, the Cheyenne Veterans Affairs Medical Center also provided an update on where its at.

“So far we’ve given out over 10,000 shots. Now about a little more than 6,000 of those are first shots and roughly about 4,000 are going to be the second shot, so we’re pretty excited about that,” said Cheyenne VA Public Affairs Officer, Sam House.

The VA currently has 2,160 doses (980 1st, 1180 2nd) of the Moderna vaccine and 110 doses of the Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) vaccine on hand. Its given out 6,120 first doses and 4,420 second doses of the Moderna and 90 doses of the Janssen. It has been saving the Janssen for veterans who live more than 50 miles away in most cases.

House said the Cheyenne VA serves veterans as far as 80 miles south, 150 miles west, north up to Torrington and Wheatland, and 100 miles east. Since December 2020, its been seeing a rise in enrollment, equaling around 900 new enrollees a month.

Though the VA currently serves more than 30,000 veterans in the region, it wants to continue growing and providing health care for as many veterans as possible.

“Now it’s really a matter of trying to get ahold of those veterans out there that aren’t enrolled with the Cheyenne VA healthcare system, and letting them know that we’re here, and we’re here for you, and ready for you to enroll and become a part of our family,” said Cheyenne VA Veterans Experience Officer, Mel Turner.

Turner said they take care of their veterans, and try to do it the best and most efficient way they possibly can.

For more information on enrolling at the Cheyenne VA Medical Center, you can call (877)-222-8387.

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