BELTON, Texas — Member of the public that are over 65 or have an illness described in Texas vaccine Phase 1B may be able to get the vaccine sooner than expected. 6 News confirmed with the state Tuesday that vaccine providers are allowed move into that phase as soon as they reach all readily available and willing people in Phase 1A.
6 News also found out, there is no uniform date set for this to happen, and it's up to individual providers to decide whether they start serving Texans in Phase 1B in the next week, or the next few months.
So how do you find out where and when the vaccine will be available? The Texas Department of State Health Services has released this map showing the location of Covid-19 Vaccine providers. The state cannot guarantee when any provider is scheduling vaccines for Texans in Phase 1B, but people are encouraged to reach out to those providers periodically to find out what is available.
The Bell County Public Health District told 6 News Tuesday, the district itself will also be providing vaccines for Phase 1B recipients and will put out schedules across the county when they have enough available.
"Our plan is to stagger so we do some appointments in Killeen, some appointments in Belton, and some appointments in Temple on different days to make it as easy as possible to get to us. We'll be putting out schedules and letting people know when they can reach out," health district Director Amanda Chadwell-Robison said. "
6 News spoke to Chadwell at a Tuesday virtual press conference, hosted by Bell County Judge David Blackburn, which provided updates on the county's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
It was the first press conference from Bell County leaders in several months.
As of Tuesday, Bell County was reporting 1,866 active cases, 157 deaths and an incidence rate of 514.2 per 100,000 people.
Chadwell said the incidence rate of more than 500 was extremely high. She said the state considers a rate of more than 200 to be in the red zone.
The COVID-19 hospital capacity in Bell County was 13.83% as of Monday. The number of people vaccinated with at least one dose was 1,234, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.