Task force working on plan to distribute a COVID-19 vaccine in Texas

The state’s infectious disease response team will begin drawing up its plan to distribute a COVID-19 vaccine once it becomes available.

The broad outlines of a statewide vaccine plan are beginning to emerge. And the Texas Department of Health and Human Services is looking to let the public know how things will likely play out.

Many of the details will be provided in a virtual meeting set for 1 p.m. Monday.

A spokesman for the health department told a Houston TV station the first doses of a vaccine may become available next month or in December but the supply will be initially very limited.

As far as who receives it first, priority will be given to front line health care workers and other critical workers at the highest risk of exposure.

People with health conditions who are elderly also move to the front of the line, along with others at greater risk for complications if they contract the virus.

The DHS spokesman said the vaccine could be widely available to the general population in Texas around the middle of 2021.

That’s when people would start receiving one or two-step vaccinations from their doctors, their pharmacy or local health departments.

The federal government would provide those doses for free but there may be administrative charges for those getting the shots.

The overall plan is still being formulated and is subject to change.

Monday’s virtual meeting is with the DHS’ Infectious Disease Response Task Force. The public is invited but those who wanted to make comments had to register by Friday.