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Polk preparing for booster vaccines

Immunocompromised residents will soon be eligible

POLK COUNTY—The Polk County COVID-19 Vaccine Coalition and other providers are preparing to provide booster vaccines to the public. 

The first group to receive booster vaccines will be those who are moderately or severely immunocompromised. Individuals who receive the booster will be required to have completed either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine in order to receive the third dose. 

Polk County and community partners have provided at least one vaccine to almost 9,000 residents so far. 

Those who may qualify as immunocompromised and are interested in obtaining a booster shot can call 828-722-5086 to schedule an appointment with the county or go to a local pharmacy providing vaccines. 

Polk County health officials said in the coming months further booster vaccine criteria may develop for other people. 

The Polk County Health and Human Services Agency is in the process of circulating a survey to determine the number of individuals in the immunocompromised group as well as later groups to those already vaccinated. The survey will be voluntary and is for those people who are interested in the booster. 

Polk County health officials said the information from the survey will be securely maintained by the health and human services agency and will be used only to help connect individuals with a vaccine booster location option in the near future. 

Local health officials said with the Delta variant, the vaccine is more important now than ever to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Polk County Schools had to close 3 schools temporarily last Friday because of the number of cases in teachers and students. 

Residents are encouraged to continue to follow the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service guidance and practice frequent hand washing, wearing masks in public places indoors, social distancing and getting vaccinated.