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Richmond, Henrico Health Districts Hold First COVID-19 Vaccine Event

Stoney
During the vaccination event, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney urged residents to continue to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines, such as wearing a mask and socially distancing, as people gather for the holidays. (Source:  City of Richmond, VA Government/Facebook)

The Richmond and Henrico health districts held a joint vaccination event Wednesday morning, following a Tuesday night announcement that both departments received shipments of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, along with the Chickahominy and Chesterfield health districts.

The health districts held the event at three vaccination clinics, one in Richmond and two in Henrico. This event was only for pre-registered front line healthcare workers, who make up part of the first priority group for vaccinations.

Dr. Melissa Viray with RCHD said similar vaccination events will be held through the new year as the vaccine becomes more widely available. Everyone is expected to have access to the vaccine by the summer of 2021, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

“This year has been tough. We’ve seen devastating illness and death within our communities, particularly among our elderly and our Black and brown communities. We mourn those hardships that our community has experienced, and we celebrate the hope that lies ahead,” Viray said.

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The Richmond, Henrico, Chickahominy, and Chesterfield health districts received their first shipments of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday. (Photo: Virginia Department of Health)

During the event, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney gave a brief health update, citing data from VDH. He said as of Wednesday, there have been a total of 8,435 registered COVID-19 cases in Richmond since the pandemic began, and 90 COVID-19 related deaths.

Until vaccine supplies are enough for the general public, Stoney encouraged residents to learn more about the vaccine, and to continue to wear a mask and take other precautions, especially as people gather for the holidays.

“The bigger our team of vaccinated Richmonders grows, the better chance we have in beating the pandemic for good,” he said. Stoney himself did not get vaccinated at the event, but says he trusts the science and will get vaccinated when the time comes.

By Wednesday, VDH says Virginia is expected to receive 140,000 doses of the Moderna Vaccine, which was approved by the FDA last week. The state also already received 50,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine earlier this week, and is slated to receive 100,000 new vaccines every week for the next few weeks.