LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville city officials don’t expect the next phase of coronavirus vaccinations — the phase including those 60 and older— to start until at least April.
Mayor Greg Fischer said a short supply of the coronavirus at the federal level is limiting just how much Louisville can distribute, and he urges people to be patient.
“It’s going to take some time, unfortunately, but I’m really optimistic that our capacity will increase,” Fischer said. “Not tomorrow, but probably when we’re starting to look out a month or two, it’s going to increase.”
Fischer said the city has surpassed its goals for vaccine distribution though, and the city should stay on that pace as more supplies become available.
“You should judge us by how efficiently we get the vaccine and get it into people’s arms and make sure that we’re doing that properly,” Fischer said. “There is no vaccine going to waste.”
It could take until April to get through everyone Phase 1B, which just started last week.
Phase 1C — the next phase, which includes people 60 and older, essential workers, and people with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or COPD — is expected to start shortly after.
After that, the city doesn’t expect the later phases to start until the fall, possibly even next winter.
“I know that a lot of people are calling and asking about changing phases and trying to get bumped up in line. I love that so many people want to get vaccinated,” Louisville Chief Medical Strategist Dr. Sarah Moyer said. “We do not have the flexibility to change what phase you are in.”
As always, social distancing and wearing masks are recommended to keep infections down.
Christopher 2X Game Changers has started a PSA campaign in the city called “Masks for Kids”, aimed at helping kids understand why masks are important.
“It saddens my heart to watch kids with dirty masks; with hardly no masks sometimes,” Christopher 2X said. “And we just wanted to be at least a soundboard to actually raise the awareness button around masks for kids.”
YMCA locations in Louisville are also now accepting mask drop-offs.
Louisville had 3,038 new coronavirus cases last week, continuing a decline from last week, but the rate of new cases is still in the critical red zone.
26 people died from COVID-19 in the city last week.