ST. CHARLES, IL — Residents and staff of long-term-care facilities in Illinois, including some in and near St. Charles, will start receiving the first round of Pfizer's coronavirus vaccinations Monday.
In a statement to Patch, CVS said nearly 900 skilled nursing homes and assisted-living facilities across the state are selecting CVS Health as their coronavirus vaccination partner, with the potential for 150,000 Illinois patients to access the vaccine.
Earlier this month, CVS Health was selected by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as one of two providers to administer coronavirus vaccinations.
CVS Pharmacy teams will administer the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine in facilities across 12 states, and the company expects to vaccinate up to 4 million residents and staff at over 40,000 long-term care facilities through the program.
"Today's rollout is the culmination of months of internal planning and demonstrates how the private sector can use its expertise to help solve some of our most critical challenges," CVS Health president and CEO Larry J. Merlo said in a news release. "I'm grateful for the Herculean efforts of everyone involved, including our health care professionals who will be deployed throughout the country to bring peace of mind to long-term care facility residents, staff, and their loved ones."
CVS Pharmacy teams will make three visits to each long-term care facilities to ensure residents and staff receive their initial shot and critical booster. The majority of residents and staff will be fully vaccinated three to four weeks after the first visit, depending on which vaccine they receive. CVS expects to complete its long-term care facility vaccination effort in approximately 12 weeks.
"Vaccinating one of our most vulnerable populations is the latest milestone in our multifaceted pandemic response, which includes testing more than 10 million people for the virus since March," CVS Health Executive Vice President Karen S. Lynch said. "The eventual availability of COVID-19 vaccines in communities across the country will bring us one step closer to overcoming the most significant health challenge of our lifetime."
"While we are beginning with long-term care facilities, we will eventually provide vaccines to the general public in our 10,000 CVS Pharmacy locations across the country in 2021 with more details to come," CVS Health Midwest Spokesperson Charlie Rice-Minoso told Patch in an email.
Vaccines in a retail setting will be offered on an appointment-only basis via CVS.com or through the CVS Pharmacy app. Help will also be provided to those without online access. CVS Pharmacy will have the capacity to administer 20 million to 25 million shots per month.
CVS' location in St. Charles is at 1500 Lincoln Highway.