DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Governor Mike DeWine said healthcare workers and people in congregate care settings will be first in line for the coronavirus vaccine. Local officials are optimistic that communities will see a curb in the spread in the months to come.
“We know the next few months, even though the vaccine is almost here, we know it’s going to take a while to get it out and we know the next few months are going to be tough,” said DeWine.
DeWine is optimistic that if a coronavirus vaccine is distributed next week it will get Ohio’s spread under control. However, officials at Public Health – Dayton and Montgomery County believe the road to recovery will be long.
“The vaccine is a long term proposition so it’s not like next week when it’s starting to be delivered that cases will start going away and we can stop wearing masks,” said Dan Suffoletto, public information officer for PHDMC. “No, unfortunately that will not be the case. It’s going to take many many months to get people vaccinated for it to make any difference.”
Health officials say getting vaccinated is a personal choice but those who do will act as a buffer to stop the virus from spreading to others.
“Once a certain level of people are vaccinated, then some of that immunity will kick in which will lessen the likelihood of those who may not get vaccinated from getting covid,” said Suffoletto.
Top priority vaccinations will be delivered to all healthcare workers in the Miami Valley and people who either live or work in long term care facilities. Health officials say while some people will have to wait to get vaccinated, these first groups are a good start to reducing the spread.
“We’re all seeing benefits from those people getting vaccinated so by anybody getting vaccinated, even if it’s not you in the beginning, you’re still going to see some of that benefit down the road because there’s going to be less people who have covid that you can potentially come into contact with,” said Suffoletto.
The vaccine is scheduled to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday with the first round of vaccines hopefully arriving Dec. 15.