SILVER SPRING, Md. — Many people in Montgomery County have been anxiously waiting to get their first dose of the vaccine. But with how the weather is shaping out to be next week, they will have to wait even longer.
Mary Anderson of the Montgomery County Health and Human Services tells WUSA9 there will be no appointments available for the first dose on Monday and Tuesday.
The current system in place allows health officials to determine openings. The department sends eligible residents who preregistered a link to sign up once doses are in hand.
Currently, the county is in Phase 1-B meaning most of the people who would receive the shot are seniors 75 years and older.
However, putting them out in the elements is a health risk officials refuse to take.
"They would have difficulty getting to the appointment, road conditions, sidewalk and parking lot conditions would be such that they would be dangerous for people," Anderson said.
On the other hand, there are still up to 2,500 people with appointments to receive their second dose next week. That would be front line health care workers and first responders who were provided a vaccine in the first tier of the phase.
The county said for now it will try to hold on to those appointments since there is a specific window of opportunity to be fully vaccinated. Determining when to cancel would be in collaboration with emergency and safety officials.
"If we were to cancel those second dose appointments, we try to make that call as early as possible so we have a chance to give people notification and then also give them the opportunity to reschedule within the next several days," Anderson added.
Getting them rescheduled that same week is important because in the following week there will be a new batch of people needing their second dose.
Similarly, the Anne Arundel County Executive's Office and the Anne Arundel County Department of Health have announced that all of the health department's COVID-19 vaccination and testing clinics scheduled for Monday will be canceled due to the inclement weather forecast for Sunday evening through Monday.
Individuals who had appointments will be notified by email or phone messages and will be provided rescheduling information.