Following the launch of Harris County Public Health’s COVID-19 Vaccine Portal on Tuesday, County Commissioner Rodney Ellis issued the following statement:
“The launch of Harris County’s COVID-19 vaccine portal represents an important first step in ensuring that our most vulnerable, at-risk community members can get this life-saving vaccine. Throughout the past year, this pandemic has exacerbated existing health disparities in these communities. People of color and low-income workers have faced the worst of this public health crisis because they are less likely to have access to affordable health care, to jobs with paid sick leave, and disproportionately have to work on the frontlines, unable to stay home. They are the ones who most need the COVID-19 vaccine.
“In the face of supply constraints, lack of coordination, and an incredibly tight deadline, Harris County Public Health has done incredible work to move us forward toward equitable vaccine distribution in our county. Although we are still working with limited supplies and must limit our eligibility criteria to Phase 1A and Phase 1B recipients under the state’s orders, I am optimistic about our new COVID vaccine portal. By allowing everyone to get on the waitlist, and using vulnerability as our guiding principle to schedule appointments, we will be able to prioritize the community members suffering the most.
“As we continue to build capacity and await for increased supply to expand distribution, we must ensure that those community members are informed about this crucial resource, and have their names on the waitlist for when the vaccine becomes available.”