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Border counties prepare for COVID-19 vaccine

vaccine
Posted at 5:29 PM, Dec 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-06 20:34:34-05

TUCSON, Ariz. — While cases continue to rise across Arizona, public health leaders in Cochise and Santa Cruz counties are preparing for COVID-19 vaccines.

Both border communities are reporting thousands of active COVID-19 infections.

Santa Cruz County is in the red for cases per 100,000 people. There are 1,580 active cases, according to county data.

The State of Arizona reports the county positive percent rate at 16.9%.

"We're not sure what's the trend that started this, but we've started seeing, you know, upwards to 20 cases a day, 30 cases a day. So, it is concerning that we're seeing that in our county [cases] are more towards populous areas of our county,” explained Jeff Terrell, Santa Cruz County health service director.

While Cochise County reports 1,805 active cases. The state reports the county's positivity rate per 100,000 people is at 8.4%.

But both rural counties are looking ahead to vaccines.

“The first phase will probably be around 1000 doses,” explained Terrell.

He explained the first dose will be given to health care workers and maybe first responders.

While heading east along the border, Cochise County health director, Dr. Alicia Thompson, said county officials are working on a vaccine distribution plan.

The Cochise County's plan includes purchasing more refrigerators to hold the vaccine.