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Maricopa County initiative vaccinates 26,000 school and child care workers

(Twitter Photo/@maricopacounty)

PHOENIX – More than 26,000 metro Phoenix school and child care workers were vaccinated for COVID-19 during a just-completed 10-week initiative, officials said Tuesday.

About one-third of all the school and child care workers in Maricopa County were vaccinated during 59 targeted events from Jan. 22 to April 1, the county said in a press release.

Twenty-one districts took part in the program, with 17 hosting events.

“The partnership with public school districts across the county has proven to be a very effective way for us to protect educators and child care workers,” Marcy Flanagan, executive director of Maricopa County Department of Public Health, said in the release.

“We are truly thankful for all the work these partners put into this very successful effort that benefited educators beyond their staff lists alone.”

Teachers, other school staff and child care workers were among the prioritized groups that gained early eligibility to receive vaccines when supplies were low. Those who haven’t been vaccinated yet can still do so at any provider in the state.

On Wednesday, Maricopa County announced that its residents have received more than 2 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, with 1.3 million individuals receiving at least one shot.

“Vaccines are an important step towards putting this pandemic behind us,” Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine, medical director for disease control at MCDPH, said in a press release.

“The sooner we get enough of the community vaccinated and reach herd immunity, the sooner we can get back to seeing family and friends the way we normally would.”

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services COVID-19 dashboard on Wednesday morning, 3,799,255 vaccine doses have been administered statewide, with 2,400,156 people (33.4% of the state’s population) having received at least one shot and 1,522,695 people fully vaccinated.

All adults across Arizona are eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccines, with the minimum age at 16 for the Pfizer shot and 18 for Moderna or Johnson & Johnson versions.

For details about statewide vaccine availability, the ADHS website has a vaccine-finder page showing locations and registration information.

For information about metro Phoenix vaccine availability, MCDPH has a locator page that lists pharmacies, government-run sites, health clinics and pop-up distribution events.

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