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Iowa health officials submit vaccine distribution, storage plans | SiouxlandProud | Sioux City, IA

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – State health officials are submitting plans to the federal government on how they will distribute COVID vaccines once approved.

Deputy Director of Siouxland District Health Tyler Brock said there are multiple vaccines currently in the approval process and most will require two doses.

He adds because there will be limited supply, those most vulnerable, like the elderly and frontline medical professionals, will have first access.

Brock said the health department is actively recruiting providers to help distribute the vaccine into the community.

“The long and short of our state’s plan is that they’re going to recruit providers that can actually get this vaccine in place. They want to ship the vaccine directly to those providers. They want the local health departments to be responsible for determining which of the local providers and where those vaccines go,” Brock said.

Brock said some potential vaccines will need to be stored at negative 50 degrees Celsius and adds temperature handling and storage is posing a challenge for the department.

“Most of the vaccines that we expect to be coming out the earliest are requiring very cold temperatures and pretty strict handling procedures. We know that vaccine efficacy and whether or not a vaccine works effectively really depends on how its stored,” Brock added.

Brock said he’s hoping vaccines will be shipped in containers stored at those temperatures but adds the department is working with state officials to make sure proper storage will be available.

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