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  • County Administrator discusses employee vaccination plans

    The Health Department is making great progress vaccinating thousands of County residents to protect them from COVID-19 and soon County employees will be able to get vaccinated. I can’t say exactly when because it’s a matter of vaccine supply, which is sparse at the moment, though we’re assured by the federal government millions of more doses are on the way. At the current rate, employees may be able to start getting vaccinated as soon as the end of March. The Human Resources Department has produced this useful Frequently Asked Questions webpage that should answer most if not all of your questions. Or you can contact Human Resources at 724-8028 for more information.
     
    All County employees not already vaccinated in the 1A and 1B.1 priority groups, will be divided into one of two vaccination priorities based on their job classifications. Some will be vaccinated in Phase 1B.2 and the rest vaccinated in Phase 1C. You can learn more about the vaccination phases at www.pima.gov/covid19vaccine. While all County employees are essential to the operations of Pima County, some are required, because of their jobs, to have more direct contact with the public.  To ensure their safety and that of the public they serve, these employees will be prioritized.
    Chuck Huckelberry 
    Additionally, County employees who meet any of the Phase 1A or 1B.1 priority groups – healthcare workers, educators, protective services, or age 65 and over (effective Feb. 18) – can register at any time to get vaccinated, they do not need to wait for the essential or government worker group to open for vaccination. Go to the County’s Vaccination Registration page to make an appointment.  However, at the current time, there is a limited supply of vaccine and few appointments are available. If circumstances allow, the Human Resources Department may facilitate the vaccination at the TCC of employees in the current open priority groups as vaccine supplies and capacity at the TCC provides.
     
    I’m sure you’ve heard stories of some departments or divisions being called to be vaccinated.  There were instances, during the early phases of operations at the Tucson Convention Center, in which some front-counter workers were notified of limited doses of vaccine that became available.  This occasionally occurred when not all the available appointments were filled at the TCC, resulting in doses that would be wasted if not used.  Please know that the health of every County employee is critically important to the Board of Supervisors and to me.  The vaccination of some during the early days of the program roll out should not be misinterpreted as us caring more about some employees than others.
     
    I’m hoping all of you will choose to get vaccinated when it’s your turn. It not only protects you, but your coworkers, your family and your friends, too. It is the best chance we have of bringing the pandemic to an end in our community and getting back to some semblance of normal, including normal County operations. By the way, there is no cost to you.
     
    Please know that while we believe the vaccine to be extremely safe and we highly recommend that each employee be vaccinated, there are reports of some, albeit minimal, reactions to the second dose.  The County’s Pandemic Leave policy has been amended in recognition of the fact that some people may experience fever or fatigue for as much as two days.  We encourage employees to consider how and when they stagger their shots so that not all members of a team are receiving their second dose at the same time.
     
    The Health Department and the County Communications Office will notify all employees when the 1B.2 phase opens and you can start registering to get your shot.
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    Communications Office

    130 W. Congress
    Tucson, AZ 85701

    (520) 724-9999

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