North Central Public Health District Gets Vaccine Shipment for emergency responders

North Central Public Health District has begun receiving COVID-19 vaccines.

  • 100 vaccines arrived Wednesday, Dec. 30.
  • Priority groups receiving it are emergency responders in Wasco, Sherman, Gilliam counties.
  • Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue in The Dalles and clinics in Moro, Condon and Arlington will distribute vaccine.

A shipment of 100 COVID-19 vaccines arrived today, Dec. 30, at North Central Public Health District. Mid- Columbia Fire & Rescue (MCF&R) in The Dalles and health clinics in Moro, Arlington and Condon will soon begin distributing the vaccines to emergency responders in Wasco, Sherman and Gilliam counties.

The health district serves those three counties, and the district and its community partners will have a key role in ongoing vaccine distribution to groups other than hospitals and long term care facilities, which receive the vaccine directly.

Emergency responders such as firefighters, law enforcement and ambulance crews are in the first group — along with hospital staff and long term care facility residents and staff — designated by the state to get the vaccine.

Dave Jensen, operations chief for MCF&R, said paramedics are licensed to give vaccines, and they received training on entering information into the state’s immunization database. He plans to begin immunizations tomorrow, Dec. 31.

The health district is getting the Moderna vaccine, which is 95 percent effective at preventing COVID-19 illness, and requires two doses 28 days apart.

“It’s important that all of the collective agencies here step up and help get through this to our capacity, and help out where we can,” Jensen said.

The Sherman County Medical Clinic in Moro will handle vaccinations for that county’s emergency responders, and the Arlington Health Center and the South Gilliam Health Center in Condon will dispense the vaccine to Gilliam County emergency responders.

Due to limited initial supply of vaccine, the federal government recommended it be given in phases, starting with healthcare and long term care staff and residents and emergency responders, then essential workers, then older adults and those with pre-existing conditions, and then the general population.

It will take many months before everyone who wants one can get a vaccine. In the meantime, to continue slowing the spread of COVID-19, it is vital to wear a mask, keep physical distance, wash hands frequently, avoid gatherings, and stay home when sick.

(For more information, please visit COVID-19 Vaccine in Oregon or contact North Central Public Health District at (541) 506-2600 or visit us on the web at or https://wascoshermangilliamcovid-