IDAHO — Idaho has received more than 56,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines, and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare said it expects to receive nearly 2,000 more by the end of the year.
Frontline health workers, including those in hospitals and employees and residents in long-term care facilities, are first in line.
Now local EMTs, paramedics, and firefighters will begin to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Ada County Paramedics has set up a COVID-19 vaccine clinic.
"The firefighters and EMTs that wanted a vaccine are making a scheduled appointment to receive the vaccine, only because vaccine requires special handling and timing, and so we have to have a schedule that goes along with that," John Blake, Deputy Chief of Operations, said.
Blake said they started the vaccination process on Sunday, administering more than 100 doses since.
"We received 500 vaccines, Moderna vaccines," Blake said.
Ada County Paramedics is part of the Ada County/City Emergency Services System (ACCESS), a collaborative effort with Boise, Eagle, and Meridian Fire Departments, Kuna and Star Fire Districts, and North Ada County Fire Rescue District.
Firefighters from those agencies are able to get the vaccine.
"This vaccine comes in two doses, so we are scheduling people now over the next couple of weeks and then in about 30 days, and that was the guidance from Moderna. We will schedule the second round for the people that had it first," Blake said.
As COVID-19 vaccines are in full swing, Blake has a message for the public.
"We continue to encourage people to socially distance, to wear their mask, to keep their hands washed and to observe those practices ongoing as a way of helping prevent the spread of the disease," he said.