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COVID-19 vaccine update for employees: Week of Feb. 8

From: Human Resources

Information continues to evolve about the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in the New River Valley and Virginia. The university continues to monitor the information and we will update employees as new details are available. In the meantime, following are several employee reminders:

Vaccine distribution and availability:

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is leading vaccine distribution across our state. For the Blacksburg campus and surrounding area, the New River Health District (NRHD) is managing the vaccine distribution, as are other local health districts where Virginia Tech has locations.

All health districts in Virginia continue to vaccinate people in group 1b which includes:

  • Frontline essential workers.
  • People aged 65 years and older.
  • People aged 16 through 64 years with a high-risk medical condition or disability that increases their risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

Vaccine supplies continue to be limited in many parts of the country. We continue to urge patience as health authorities work to overcome challenges and get more vaccine.

Virginia Tech group 1b employees:

Virginia Tech is working with the NRHD to register our group 1b frontline employees for vaccines.

The university is also identifying group 1b employees across Virginia and coordinating with those local health districts to get employees vaccinated.

If you have questions about your role with the university and which vaccine group you fall into, please speak with your supervisor or HR representative.

Aged 65 and up or aged 16 to 64 with an underlying health condition:

If you fall into the 65 and up age group or are an individual aged 16 to 64 with an underlying health condition, you should register yourself for the vaccine.

  • In the New River Valley, register at www.nrvroadtowellness.com. After registering, you will need to wait for a call from NRHD to schedule your vaccine appointment.
  • In other parts of Virginia, visit your local health district website or call them to find out about the registration process in your area.
  • In some locations, pharmacies are partnering with health districts as vaccination sites. Individuals may contact their local pharmacies or health districts for more information and instructions.

Vaccines for other Virginia Tech employees and students:

After vaccines for group 1b are completed, the VDH will move to group 1c, which includes all other essential workers. Faculty and staff in higher education institutions have been identified by VDH as being part of this group.

In addition to full-time faculty and staff, non-student wage, and student wage and graduate assistants who work for the university in some capacity, will be included in group 1c, unless specifically excluded by the VDH.

All other students, unless they qualify for priority groups 1b or 1c, will be vaccinated as part of the general population.

We do not know when the VDH will begin vaccinating group 1c or the general population, but information will be communicated once it is known.

Follow good health guidelines:

In the meantime, every member of our community is reminded to stay vigilant and follow good health guidelines:

  1. Avoid Close contact situations. Maintain distance from other people.
  2. Avoid Crowds. Being in a large crowd will increase the chance that you will be around someone infected with the virus and that the virus will spread to others.
  3. Avoid Closed, poorly ventilated spaces.
  4. Wear Masks.

Even once an individual receives a vaccine, they should continue following these guidelines for the safety of our community until restrictions can be lifted.

Resources:

Be sure to check these resources often for updates: