Missourians in next phase of COVID-19 vaccine rollout eager to get shot

Becky Manthei
Posted at 6:39 PM, Jan 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-18 19:40:53-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Starting Monday, Missouri is in Phase 1B, Tier 2 of its COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan.

This phase includes people ages 65 and over and adults with the following health conditions that put them at high-risk for the virus:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
  • Intellectual and/or developmental disabilities such as Down syndrome
  • Heart conditions such as heart failure, CAD (coronary artery disease) or cardiomyopathies
  • Immunocompromised state from solid organ transplant
  • Severe obesity (BMI >40kg/m2)
  • Pregnancy
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus

People in those categories tell 41 Action News it's an exciting time.

Clay County resident Becky Manthei said she meets the requirements to be in the group and is looking forward to getting her shot.

"I'm just glad it's at that phase right now," Manthei said. "It really helps me out mentally and emotionally that this is going to take place, it's going to happen."

Manthei said she fully supports vaccines.

"I come from a generation, the baby boomers, where I remember lining up in school and getting the polio shot, so I know what this consists of and what needs to be done," Manthei said.

As of Monday, Manthei is eligible to receive the vaccine, but that doesn't mean she'll get it right away.

When announcing the activation of the first tier of Phase 1B last week, Gov. Mike Parson's office said there are currently not enough vaccines for everyone included in these groups.

"As additional supplies arrive, this activation will allow for the greatest vaccine coverage where it is most needed. It will also allow vaccinators and organizations to continue planning effectively for future tiers and phases," a news release said.

Manthei said she filled out information about her eligibility on the Clay County Health Department's website and is waiting to hear back.

While she doesn't know how long it could take until she can get her shot, she's hoping it's within the next few weeks. She's glad to know her time is coming soon.

"It's like the light at the end of the tunnel's getting closer and closer, you know, we're getting out of this," Manthei said.

Phase 1B, Tier 2 includes adults with developmental or intellectual disabilities such as Down syndrome.

Lee's Summit resident David Earls said his adult son, Edward, who has Down syndrome, should be getting his vaccine later this week. Edward lives in a residential group home with other adults with developmental disabilities through the Center for Developmentally Disabled.

"I couldn't personally think of a higher-risk segment of the population than these folks," Earls said.

Earls said his son, along with the other residents, are scheduled to get their vaccines later this week.

"It's very exciting for me, and it's very exciting to know that the rest of the residents will be vaccinated as well because that obviously will reduce Edward's exposure to it," Earls said.

Earls and his wife fall into the Phase 1B, Tier 2 category as well. They've sent in their information to the Jackson County Health Department and are eagerly waiting to hear back.

"We're looking forward to being formally notified of where and when to appear and believe me, we will," Earls said.

Parson's office said people in Phase 1B, Tier 2 should reach out to their local pharmacy or health care provider to find out when the vaccine will be available to them and how they can get it.

People can also visit for information on vaccine availability.