Indiana has received 520,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to date, state says

Indiana has received 520,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to date, almost all of which have already been used or promised to people with scheduled appointments, state health officials said Wednesday.

Many of those doses, however, remain in vials, promised for appointments in the coming days. As of mid-day Wednesday, nearly 220,000 people had received the first of the two doses and another 40,281 were fully vaccinated.

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New Wednesday:State’s COVID-19 vaccine registration site open to people 70 and up

About 455,000 Indiana residents are scheduled to be vaccinated be the end of the month, state health officials said, with the state expecting to receive at least 79,000 doses of vaccine each week.

The state has a dose earmarked for every person who has made an appointment, said Dr. Lindsay Weaver, chief medical officer for the Indiana Department of Health. She said these second doses are not included in the 79,000 number that the state receives weekly.

Starting in mid-December, the state offered vaccine for frontline healthcare workers in a rollout that proved for the most part orderly. Five days ago the state opened up registration to seniors 80 and older and on Wednesday to those 70 and older.

On both days, seniors flocked to make appointments either online at the state’s website ourshot.in.gov or reaching out to the 211 call center, overwhelming both sites.

By Wednesday, 97,729 seniors 80 and over had made appointments for vaccination at one of more than 150 sites across the state. In the first six hours of Wednesday, 59,723 seniors 70 and over made appointments to be vaccinated.

The state hopes to receive additional doses from the federal government but at this point does not know how many to expect, said Indiana State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box.

“We are in a numbers game,” she said. “A big part of that is we just don’t know when we’re going to get a big bump in vaccine doses.”

State officials demurred about when they might extend vaccination to additional priority groups, saying that it depends on how much interest those currently eligible to receive the vaccine express.

Last week state officials announced that Indiana would be taking an age-based approach to vaccinating its residents, as those individuals have the highest risk of developing severe disease or dying from COVID-19.

Contact IndyStar reporter Shari Rudavsky at shari.rudavsky@indystar.com. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter: @srudavsky.