Gov. Jim Justice on Monday urged any West Virginian age 65 year and older still in need of a COVID-19 vaccine to call the state’s vaccination hotline immediately.
“If you’re 65 and older and you’re still waiting on a vaccine, call the West Virginia COVID-19 hotline, the COVID-19 vaccine info line,” Justice said during a coronavirus briefing on Monday.
“Call that number. Please call that number.”
Justice said with the amount of vaccines now coming into the state, appointments for residents 65 and older can be prioritized while still keeping eligibility open for everyone 16 and older. The vast majority of the state’s virus-related deaths have been residents over the age of 65.
The state’s information hotline can be reached at 1-833-734-0965. The line is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
With Walmart becoming the newest participant in the federal pharmacy program, Justice said West Virginians can now get vaccinated at their local Walmart pharmacies. Other participants in the federal program include Fruth Pharmacy, Kroger and Walgreens, as well as many local pharmacies.
Through the website vaccinefinder.org, West Virginians can enter their ZIP code to find participating pharmacies nearby and whether they have vaccines available. The website also allows people to search available vaccinations by brand; the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses each, while the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is one dose.
If vaccines are available, residents should call the corresponding number to make an appointment. No walk-ins are accepted at this time, according to the website.
Justice urged high-risk West Virginians to get vaccinated as soon as possible, as deaths in the older population continue. On Monday, the Department of Health and Human Resources reported four new COVID-19 deaths — a 67-year-old male from Raleigh County, a 75-year-old male from Kanawha County, an 89-year old female from Kanawha County and a 93-year old female from Kanawha County.
The four new deaths bring West Virginia’s total virus-related deaths to 2,638.