The Buffalo County Health Department is working with local and state partners to prepare for when a COVID-19 Vaccine is available for our community. Buffalo County Public Health will update this website as information becomes available.
Why do we need a vaccine?
Getting vaccinated is a great way to protect yourself and our community. A COVID-19 vaccine can protect you from getting sick and potentially prevent you from spreading the virus to others.
A vaccine will not replace the need to continue other actions that stop the spread of COVID-19. This is especially true while we are still in the process of administering the vaccine, which may take many months.
When will a COVID-19 vaccine be available in Buffalo County? Who will be able to get vaccinated?
The first phase of the vaccine is only available to long term care residents and healthcare workers because there is a limited supply of COVID-19 vaccine. This vaccine is already being distributed throughout the state. Vaccine supply is expected to increase substantially in 2021, but the timing remains unknown.
As the supply increases, other essential workers and people age 65 and older will also be in the first groups to receive the vaccine. Later, as more becomes available, groups at higher risk for contracting COVID-19 and the general public will be recommended to get the vaccine.
Is the vaccine safe and effective?
The FDA, CDC, and independent advisors all review vaccine safety and effectiveness data before any vaccine is approved or allowed for distribution. COVID-19 vaccines go through all of the usual steps and phases that all vaccines go through to get full approval.
The COVID-19 vaccine was approved through Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). More information about safety can be found here. The FDA and CDC will continue to closely monitor the vaccine as it is rolled out.
What can I do in the meantime, until the COVID-19 vaccines becomes available?
Continue to follow local public health guidance such as wearing a face-covering, avoiding gatherings, staying home if you are sick, washing your hands, cleaning frequently touched surfaces, limiting trips and travel to essentials only, and keeping 6 feet of distance from others.