DuPage County health official wants more vaccine to hasten '1B' phase

coronavirus
COVID-19 vaccine Photo credit Getty Images

A DuPage County health official said COVID-19 vaccine supplies need to double or else it could take up to six months to distribute to the next priority group.

The vaccine becomes available to the next priority group in DuPage County next week, according to Health Executive Director Karen Ayala.

Under Phase 1A of distribution, about 50,000 healthcare workers were vaccinated. More than five times as many people — about 280,000 -- are eligible for the next phase, known as 1B.

This group includes any individual who is over age of 65; educators; day care workers; first responders; postal workers; transportation workers and essential workers such as grocery store employees.

Ayala said the county would need to receive 20,000 doses of vaccine a week in order to distribute it to Phase 1B people in about three months.

Right now, she says deliveries of the vaccine have been "relatively unpredictable" and that the county is receiving about 10,000 doses a week.

At the current rate, it could take up to six months to get shots into the arms of the Phase 1B segment.