At a COVID-19 vaccination registration site Friday, there was a steady stream of people needing to register.
“It’s near my house, so I said since this is near my house let me go,” said Lenora Harris.
The in-person registration event was held at the Highland Hills Library Branch in the southern part of the city of Dallas, an area where many people face challenges getting registered online or by phone.
“I’m not familiar with all the computer gadgets and I barely do work my phone,” registrant Andrew Perry said.
“Every time we get a number it’s not working or something like that,” registrant Saundra Halton said.
“I don’t have a computer either,” Harris said.
That’s why the in-person registration sites are important.
The Dallas County Democratic Party is taking it a step further. The 'Max the Vax' campaign will target a neighborhood in the southern area of Dallas going door to door registering people.
“Because they don’t have healthcare access in their communities. Because they don’t have reliable internet in their communities. And if we really want this rollout to be successful, we’re going to have to take this to the community,” Dallas County Democratic Party Development Director Joanna Cattanach said.
People living in these areas are glad they’re getting help to make sure they’re on the list and not forgotten.
“I feel that’s what a lot of people need,” Perry said. “It’s a lot of people my age and older that just need this.”
The in-person registration site at the Highland Hills Library will continue Saturday, Feb. 5 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Beginning Monday, Feb. 8, Dallas College, in conjunction with Dallas County Health and Human Services, is helping individuals who need assistance registering for COVID-19 vaccines. Registration assistance will be offered at Cedar Valley and Mountain View campuses for members of the community who may be having difficulty signing up for vaccine appointments.
For more information on the Dallas College Vaccine Registration Assistance, you can call 214-378-1580.
Through Feb. 18, several vaccine registration events will also be held at a number of schools in the Dallas ISD. See a list here.
The vaccine is currently only being administered to those who are part of Phase 1A and 1B, as outlined by the Texas Department of State Health Services. Those in Phase 1A are front-line healthcare workers or residents of long-term care facilities. Phase 1B includes those who are over the age of 65, or those over the age of 16 with a chronic medical condition that puts them at risk for severe illness.
On March 3, vaccine availability was expanded to include school and child care workers.
Once vaccinated, people are expected to get some level of protection within a couple of weeks after the first shot, but full protection may not happen until a couple of weeks after the second shot. Even when fully vaccinated, it's still possible to become infected by the virus since the vaccine does not offer 100% protection.
The Texas DSHS advises that the vaccine will not be readily available for the general public until late spring or early summer 2021.
Want to Get on a Vaccine Waitlist?
As the state begins to distribute the COVID-19 vaccines for those in Phase 1A and 1B, county health departments have begun waitlists for those wish to be inoculated.
You can now register to recieve the vaccination in Collin, Dallas, Denton and Tarrant counties. Links are below:
You do not need to be a resident of the county to register for a COVID-19 vaccine in that county -- registration is open to anyone in Texas. For those without internet access, Tarrant County is also taking registrations by phone at 817-248-6299. In Dallas County, call the DCHHS vaccine hotline at 1-855-IMMUNE9 (1-855-466-8639). In Denton County, call 940-349-2585.
For a more detailed breakdown of who is included in each priority group in Texas, see this page from the Texas DSHS.