Pharmacist Fetiya Omer displays a vial of COVID-19 vaccination at UW Medicine, where they began staff vaccinations earlier, Tuesday in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Pharmacist Fetiya Omer displays a vial of COVID-19 vaccination at UW Medicine, where they began staff vaccinations earlier, Tuesday in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

County’s first shipment of COVID vaccine could arrive Friday

Four pods, containing a total of 3,900 doses, are headed to Providence Regional Medical Center Everett.

EVERETT — Snohomish County’s first shipment of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine could land Friday in Everett.

Staff at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett expect to receive four temperature-controlled pods, each containing 975 doses.

The first shots will be administered Friday or Saturday to staff at the hospital, Providence spokesperson Casey Calamusa said.

With a limited early supply, the county’s first doses are going to high-risk health care workers, as well as staff and residents at long-term care homes.

In Snohomish County, that amounts to 25,000-28,000 people, according to a Snohomish Health District estimate.

Statewide, more than 1,000 health care workers had received their first shot as of Thursday, the state Department of Health said in a news release.

Meanwhile, the federal Centers for Disease Control told governors that states would receive 40% fewer vaccine doses than originally planned, Gov. Jay Inslee announced Thursday.

The state originally planned to receive more than 70,000 doses next week. Instead, it will be 44,850.

The governor told reporters Thursday he’s reached out to, but not heard from, any federal officials regarding the reduction.

“There’s been no explanation whatsoever,” he said. “I’m frustrated right now that the administration has not explained it to me. I am hoping there is nothing nefarious going on.”

He and state Secretary of Health John Wiesman speculated that it might simply be a glitch in how information on dosage deliveries is communicated.

However, hospitals may be able to stretch their current shipments to vaccinate more people.

Each vial contains enough liquid when it is mixed to draw a sixth, possibly even a seventh, dose, the Department of Health news release said.

Earlier this month, state officials estimated that everyone in the first wave of vaccinations would get their first of two doses by mid-January.

Should future deliveries be smaller than anticipated, the state will push to keep its schedule for vaccinations at long term care facilities.

Additionally, a federal Food and Drug Administration panel endorsed Moderna’s COVID vaccine, bringing a second viable vaccine closer to emergency use.

If approved, the state expects about 128,000 doses from Moderna by the end of the month.

Joey Thompson: 425-339-3449; jthompson@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @byjoeythompson.

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