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Governor says Covid-19 vaccine will be delivered to five counties, including Hancock & Chickasaw

DES MOINES — Public health officials in five Iowa counties, including two here in northern Iowa, notified that they would not get more Covid-19 vaccine doses this week because they were lagging in dispensing it, will get their doses this week.

Governor Kim Reynolds made the announcement Tuesday during an interview with Radio Iowa.

“I’m breaking news here with you,” Reynolds said. “…Everybody is on track. They’ve made the expectations and so everybody will get the allocation that they would have received.”

Reynolds said there were a variety of factors, including bad weather, that prevented public health departments in Buchanan, Chickasaw, Hancock, Poweshiek, and Washington Counties from dispensing first doses.

The governor said state officials have offered to help find nurses to give the shots and she said it’s not unreasonable to require every county to give at least 80% of the first doses they receive the week it’s delivered.

“I have to have an expectation that they have to meet because Iowans are frantically waiting to get that vaccine and it just provides hope and it helps us turn a corner and it gets things back to normal,” Reynolds said, “and so we cannot be sitting on vaccine.”

Reynolds would prefer a county dispense 100% of its supply of first doses of vaccine each week, but 80% is the standard the state has set.

“We’ve told them that they can — if they’re meeting that criteria — they can count on a specific number of vaccines coming into their county and so that helps, too,” Reynolds said. “You know, there’s a lot of uncertainty, even for us, but to be able to say to them: ‘This is what your allocation will be for the next three weeks, make your appointments, get 100% administered, and we’re really going to rock and roll here in the state of Iowa and get our numbers where they need to be.’”

Reynolds will hold a news conference later this morning to discuss the statewide vaccination rate and other pandemic-related issues.

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