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First coronavirus vaccine could arrive before Christmas

A Citizens Emergency Response Team member and National Guardsman guide traffic at a Dec. 8 community coronavirus test.
Kurt HIldebrand

If all goes well, the four counties including Douglas could start receiving vaccines in the next two weeks.

Quad County Preparedness Manager Dr. Jeanine Freeman said the Western states will review the first vaccine prior to it being distributed next week.

First in line for the coronavirus vaccine will be 14,000 front-line healthcare workers, first responders and residents of long-term care facilities the over first two months after receiving the vaccine.



Freeman said Carson City Health and Human Services has been purchasing equipment to conduct vaccinations since July.

She said the vaccine won’t be mandatory. 



“We will not be mandating vaccinations,” she said on Friday. “There won’t be enough vaccine for quite a while for that to be an option.”

Freeman said that the vaccine timetable has been changing every day, so it will be distributed as it becomes available.

It will be spring before the vaccines, which are undergoing emergency approval by the FDA, will be available to the general public, Freeman said.

The vaccine will require two shots 21-28 days apart and can’t be administered within a month of someone receiving a flu shot.

Douglas County reported three coronavirus deaths on Thursday, the first time the county has had multiple deaths reported on a single day since the outbreak began.

“The Quad County Region experienced one of its worst days with nine COVID-19 related deaths,” Emergency Manager Tod Carlini reported. “Douglas County also had one of its worst days with deaths, recording a total of three.”

Of the 10 deaths in Douglas County as of Thursday, nine have been residents over the age of 70.

The dead included a man in his 70s, and two women, one in her 80s and another in her 90s.

The county reported more recoveries on Thursday than new cases for the first time since two days before Thanksgiving.

The county reported 44 new cases and 51 recoveries, bringing it to a total of 821 active cases and 642 recoveries.

“I am hoping that we continue to see the distribution of recoveries increase over new cases,” Carlini said.

The county has had 10 deaths since the beginning of the outbreak, with nine of those since Nov. 4.