COVID Vaccine - web only

A vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown.

HARTFORD — Van Buren and Cass county residents can now put their name on a list that will let them know when the health department is ready to begin vaccinating individuals in their priority group.

The Van Buren/Cass District Health Department (VBCDHD) launched the COVID-19 Individual Vaccination Survey on its website this week.

“The best way to ensure you receive notification when clinics and appointments become available to you is to complete the new Individual Vaccination Survey,” VBCHD officials wrote in an vaccine update email.

To find the survey, visit www.vbcassdhd.org/covid-19-vaccine and click on “I want a COVID vaccine!”

Once someone completes the survey, their contact information will be added to a contact list and organized by priority group. The VBCDHD will reach out to them via phone or email when it is ready to begin vaccinating individuals in their priority group.

Anyone who is included in any of the three Phase 1A priority groups who live or work in Cass or Van Buren County are now eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccine.

Phase 1B will open up on Monday, though the two counties are experiencing a low supply of vaccine, similar to Berrien County.

“Although these priority phases are opening, it is important to note that vaccine supply is very limited,” the VBCDHD wrote in the email update. “Vaccine and clinic availability are dependent on the supply of vaccine from the manufacturer and how vaccine is allocated from the federal level to Michigan.”

The VBCDHD estimates that by the end of next week, it will have given out 700 initial doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to folks in Phase 1A.

As of Wednesday, 1,232 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine had been administered in Van Buren County and 234 doses had been administered in Cass County, according to the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.

The VBCDHD is expecting to schedule most of its clinics and appointments on a first come, first served basis because of the low supply and high demand.

In addition to open clinics, some individuals may receive priority through their place of employment. If an employer is health care or critical infrastructure and has not yet signed up, residents should encourage them to complete the COVID-19 Healthcare & Critical Infrastructure Vaccination Survey, which is also available at the link above.

“We are actively working together with our health care partners to vaccinate all of those eligible as soon as possible. Your health and safety and the health and safety of our entire two counties is a priority and of utmost importance to us. We appreciate your patience as we move through the various phases of the vaccination process,” VBCDHD officials wrote in the email.

COVID data update

Cass County recorded two additional COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, while Van Buren County recorded one.

This brings Cass County’s pandemic death toll to 48, and Van Buren County’s to 75.

Over Wednesday and Thursday, Cass County recorded 67 new COVID-19 cases, while Van Buren County recorded 74.

Contact: anewman@TheHP.com, 932-0357, Twitter: @HPANewman