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Mid-Missouri health officials: More resources needed to achieve President Biden’s ‘return to normalcy’

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

In a primetime address to the nation on Thursday night, President Joe Biden announced his plan to have all US adults vaccine-eligible by May 1 and to get the country closer to normal by July 4.

“By July the Fourth, there’s a good chance your families and friends will be able to get together in your backyard or your neighborhood and have a cookout or a barbecue and celebrate Independence Day,” Biden said.

The Columbia/Boone County health department is prepared to vaccinate the local population if more vaccine supply becomes available, a spokeswoman told ABC 17.

Sara Humm with the health department said the only hindrance to making Biden's plan a reality is to have enough vaccine.

"If we have the supply available, that's definitely something that is possible," Humm said. "We will have the capacity to be able to vaccinate folks in a week or a month or however long."

MU Health Care Executive Director of Pharmacy and Laboratory Services Brad Myers agreed with Humm that it's possible to get the vaccines in arms, however, there would need to be increased resources.

"If we are able to get additional vaccines, we would have to increase our resources that we need to run the clinic and it would take a little bit of redesign," Myers said.

Myers said it all depends on the amount of vaccine supply local health organizations receive.

"If we have vaccine across the state, there is a high likelihood we could meet that July 4th deadline," Myers said. "I feel very confident we would be able to handle an increase in supply."

Lisa Cox, a spokesperson for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services said the state is committed to vaccinating every willing Missourian as soon as possible.

"Our state will continue ordering vaccine for direct distribution to our community providers, and we look forward to them scaling up the efforts for vaccinating substantially more Missourians as soon as possible," Cox said.

As of Friday, more than 1.7 million total vaccine doses have been administered in Missouri, according to the state's coronavirus vaccine dashboard. On Monday, more than 500,000 Missourians will become vaccine-eligible under the state's Phase 1B Tier 3.

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Zola Crowder

Zola Crowder joined the ABC 17 News team as a multimedia journalist in June 2020 after graduating from the University of Missouri with a broadcast journalism degree. Before reporting at ABC 17, Zola was a reporter at KOMU where she learned to cover politics, crime, education, economics and more.

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2 Comments

  1. Biden says “By July the Fourth, there’s a good chance your families and friends will be able to get together in your backyard or your neighborhood and have a cookout or a barbecue and celebrate Independence Day,” But Joe, we are already able to do so, we just may not be allowed to by “experts” and “officials” who have been wrong far more than right.
    “If we have the supply available, that’s definitely something that is possible,” Humm said. But Sara, it’s already possible, and once again we may not be allowed to do so, by the very same “experts” and “officials”. You know, the very same ones that are advertising the barely tested at all experimental vaccines are the end all be all solution. Never mind that cases and consequent deaths are rapidly declining regardless of a lack of vaccine availability. Also regardless what kind of restrictions are forced upon us, or if there are none at all. There’s no correlation between cases and restrictions, or lack thereof, nor cases and vaccines, or lack thereof. No correlation, no causation possible.

  2. THANK YOU PRESIDENT TRUMP for cutting the red tape and getting the vaccine to the people in warp speed. Everything President* Biden is taking credit for now was done by President Trump.

    In a few months when gas prices are sky high and the value of the dollar is declining due to liberal/socialist/marxist/communist Democrats printing trillions of dollars for their pet projects, we will blame Biden.
    We also need to blame Biden for the humanitarian crisis he is creating on the southern border. More kids in cages than ever. Where is the outcry from the liberals? They are all hypocrites.

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