Mississippi will begin scheduling appointments for the next phase of the vaccination plan this week. This group, 1b, includes Mississippians age 75 and older, first responders and educators.

Phase 1b has been scheduled to begin in mid-January, alongside phase 1a, which offers vaccines to health care workers and people living or working in long-term care facilities (LTCFs).

This comes just days after the Mississippi State Department of Health, which has coordinated vaccine distribution to hospitals and LTCFs, announced that it would offer drive-thru vaccination for other health care workers in phase 1a, including doctors and nurses working in clinics, dentists, technicians, phlebotomists and others.

The drive-thru clinic will allow 420 health care workers to get the vaccine in DeSoto County this week, with appointments on Tuesday and Thursday.

According to a report released on Dec. 31, over 20,000 vaccines have already been given in the state. At that time, 524 vaccines had been given in DeSoto County, according to the report.

In February, other essential workers, like United States Postal Service employees, agriculture workers or those working in grocery stores or in transportation, will be eligible to receive the vaccine. After that group, people over the age of 65 or those with high-risk medical conditions will be eligible, and vaccination is expected to begin for those groups in February.

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