In a recent City Talk program on KGVO, City of Missoula Communications Director Ginny Merriam said she has also been tasked with helping to coordinate COVID vaccinations.

“Since about mid January I am on the Missoula county COVID-19 vaccine coordination team and we coordinate 30-some providers of the vaccine in collaboration with our health officer and starting this past Sunday we now can offer the vaccine to all Missoula County residents 16 and older,” said Merriam. “What this means on the ground is at all of those people 16 and older who live in Missoula County can go online to COVID-19 dot or phone us at 258- INFO, that’s 258-4636 to shop for an appointment for your first shot.”

Merriam said there is a real temptation to think that the pandemic is almost over, but she said we have a long way to go before all Missoula County residents are vaccinated.

“We have a ways to go,” she said. “I think a lot of people are feeling like we're almost done with the pandemic, and I think that that's true in one sense. In another sense though, we have a ways to go. “We are standing now at about 18% of eligible Missoula County residents that are fully immunized through a vaccine, and we have a goal where we'll feel comfortable at about 75%.”

As with every conversation about vaccinations, the key is the supply Montana receives from the federal government.

“So much of what we do depends on our supply,” she said. “What comes into Missoula is split into a state pipeline and then some is from a federal allocation. It's it has been a balancing act to juggle the federal vaccine that is going to pharmacies. There's also some federal vaccine going into partnership Health Center and the vaccine from the state, which is mostly going to our public clinics. My message to the public is, please be patient and keep trying.”

Those who desire to be vaccinated should visit this website immediately, or call 258-INFO, that’s 258-4636.

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