COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – Concerns over the Johnson & Johnson vaccine prompted Muscogee County Jail officials to make changes to an upcoming vaccination effort for inmates.
The Muscogee County Jail has partnered with the Columbus Health Department and they will be administering the COVID-19 vaccine to inmates. When News 3 last spoke with Lieutenant Colonel John Darr, he and other jail officials were working on getting inmates the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Now that the CDC has put a pause on Johnson &Johnson inmates will receive the Moderna vaccine on Apr 19.
“I think you’re going to see some individuals that are going to be excited about getting the opportunity to get the vaccine. I also think you’ll have a number of inmates also that they don’t want to do anything with it and I thinks that kind of what we’re seeing in the general public,” Darr said.
There are roughly 900 inmates inside the facility. The vaccine will be administered by dorms. The Health Department plans on having 550 vaccines available for that day. Darr told News 3 their number one priority is the safety and well-being of inmates.
“Sheriff Countryman’s number one priority when it comes to the county jail is the welfare of inmates and this is an opportunity to do something, in our opinion, that satisfies the wealth fair and the health of the inmates. So for the Sheriff and the Sheriff’s office, were excited to partner up with the health department.”
Vaccination tables will be set up on each floor and inmates will be brought in, in small groups, to receive their vaccine. Inmates will also have a designated for officers to monitor them after receiving the vaccine.
Since inmates are receiving the Moderna vaccine, jail officials have already organized a day and time for inmates to receive their second dose. Inmates will also receive their vaccination card and it will be given to them once they are released from the county jail. So for those who are released before the jail administers the second dose, they will be able to receive it outside of the jail.