KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri is rolling out a large-scale plan to inoculate those who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Department of Health and Senior Services announced on Monday that it chose nine hospitals and health care systems in the Kansas City region to administer a portion of its 76,000 weekly doses this month.
"This is the first time we've actually known exactly how much vaccine we're going to get at any given time," Charlie Shields, president and CEO of Truman Medical Centers/University Health, said during Monday's Jackson County legislative meeting.
At the same meeting, Shield said the hospital's current limited vaccine supply forced the cancellation of upcoming appointments.
"We may be dark for tomorrow, and we think we'll get this shipment of 5,000 either late tomorrow or early Wednesday, and we'd be able to start back up," Shields said.
Under the new plan, Truman Medical Centers, Liberty Hospital and North Kansas City Hospital will receive doses this week and on the third week of the month.
The following hospitals will receive their vials during the second and fourth week:
- Bothwell Regional Medical Center in Sedalia.
- Cass Regional Medical Center in Harrisonville.
- Fitzgibbon Hospital in Marshall.
- Golden Valley Memorial Hospital in Clinton.
- HCA Health System.
- Saint Luke’s Health.
Shields told 41 Action News vaccination appointments are scheduled into March.
"That is subject to availability of vaccines, so as fast as we can get vaccine in, we will actually immunize people," Shields said.
Shields said those who can receive the vaccine should set up an appointment, but urged patience as about 35 call-takers handle 4,000 to 5,000 calls daily.
"People may get a busy signal, and we ask them to keep calling back," Shields said.
The Missouri Hospital Association said the medical facilities that were chosen can administer at least 5,000 vaccines weekly. Institutions that didn't make the cut this time, might be considered during the next round.