Confusion over Washington state vaccine timeline grows

Wil Peterson was anxiously waiting for the month of February, because February is when the initial state timeline says grocery store workers who are 50 years and older are qualified to get the vaccine.

"I am hoping that with every fiber of my being that it’s possible," Peterson said.

But with so much confusion on Friday over the federal government's next shipment and the state’s timeline, Peterson who works at an Everett Fred Meyer is worried his wait will become much longer.

"To think that’s not going to happen according to the timetable we understood, that’s basically devastating," Peterson said.

Governor Inslee joined Oregon Governor Kate Brown on Friday calling for answers from President Trump’s administration. Brown said there is no federal reserve of vaccines being shipped soon as promised.

"The news coming out today is very alarming that there might not be supplies," Mayor Durkan of Seattle said.

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So what does that mean for those now waiting for their second dose?

 "What we are hearing from our federal partners is that they are confident that the production capacity of the two manufacturers is adequate to meet the ongoing demand for second doses," Dr. Jeff Duchin with Public Health – Seattle & King County said.

But outside of the supply drama, the fact is the majority of allocated vaccines so far remain in cold storage in Washington. State distribution has been far from stellar with Washington in the bottom third in the country when it comes to the population vaccinated.

Durkan says the state cannot do it alone and says we need all hands on deck.

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 "Our city and county have never done this before. It’s just math. Look at King County: in order to get to the immunity we want we need 70% of adults to have the vaccination, that is 1.3 million people who need two doses."

In the meantime, the wait for the vast majority of the population continues and for people like Peterson on the frontlines, the wait he says is agonizing.

"You can’t really understand or appreciate what people are going through until you are put in that position," Peterson said.

In light of Governor Brown blasting the feds for not keeping up with vaccine shipments, the US Dept of Health and Human Services on Friday said it was the state’s misguided expectations of what was coming. The feds say there has been no reduction of doses on their end.