Bartlett Regional Hospital pharmacist Chris Sperry holds a vial of COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 15, 2020. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)

Bartlett Regional Hospital pharmacist Chris Sperry holds a vial of COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 15, 2020. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)

Half of Juneau’s residents expected to get COVID-19 vaccine by end of March

Late Tuesday, state officials expanded vaccine eligibility

A mere three months after the first COVID-19 vaccine doses arrived in Alaska, the City and Borough of Juneau is on the cusp of vaccinating half of the city’s eligible population, city officials said Tuesday at the weekly community briefing.

According to Robert Barr, the city’s emergency operations center planning chief, 32.5% of residents have received one dose, and 26.3% of residents have received two vaccine doses. Based on the current trajectory and quantities expected, Juneau will cross the 50% vaccinated threshold by the end of March.

Watch Dunleavy news conference on COVID-19

“Our clinics this next week are all first dose clinics, and they are almost full. If you are eligible and listening, I encourage you to sign up for one of the remaining spots or to get on the waiting list,” Barr said.

Registration can be done online through https://juneau.org/covid-19/vaccine-information.

Barr said that the city will announce additional vaccine clinics as soon as they learn more about the April vaccine allotment. Barr said that he expects the April shipment will include the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

When registration for the next round of clinics opens, more residents will be eligible, based on a news release issued by Gov. Mike Dunleavy on Tuesday.

According to the news release, effective immediately, the COVID-19 vaccine is available for all people who live or work in Alaska and are age 16 and older, making Alaska the first state in the nation to remove eligibility requirements.

Overall, Juneau’s seven-day infection level is 0.57%, officially considered a “minimal” level of spread.

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“It’s great that our numbers are low. My goal is to stay at minimal until we can get rid of the concept of community risk,” said Deputy City Manager Mila Cosgrove, who is also the emergency operations center incident commander.

She added that the city is working on a special COVID-19 community update focused on vaccines.

Contact reporter Dana Zigmund at dana.zigmund@juneauempire.com or 907-308-4891.

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