illinois coronavirus

50K People Sign Up For Suburban COVID-19 Portal, Register for Vaccine

The vaccine will not be available to the general public likely until months into 2021

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More than 50,000 people have signed up for a vaccine portal started in the Chicago suburbs that allows residents to receive the latest coronavirus updates and register for the vaccine.

Lake County health officials created a COVID-19 portal called "AllVax," allowing residents to sign up for coronavirus updates, schedule appointments and register for the vaccine.

"We're very, very excited and very optimistic that our public is willing and wanting this covid-19 vaccine to get their lives back," Mark Pfister, executive director of the Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center, said.

Pfister explained that people can register for the vaccine by providing their age and any underlying risk factors. Officials will then be able to directly contact them when the vaccine is available.

Lake County expects to receive 6,000 doses of the vaccine in the first shipment within days of approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to a release.

Though Lake County was the first in the state to launch the website, DuPage has also begun the same roll-out plan for its first expected 13,000 doses of the coronavirus vaccine.

"We are looking at setting up a site and are in the final stages of identifying these sites so that they are geographically distributed across the county," Karen Ayala, DuPage County Health Department executive director, said.

Illinois health officials said the general public will likely receive doses of the vaccine months into 2021, but have not announced official preparations on which groups will be in line first.

Once the vaccine is available to less-vulnerable groups of individuals, officials said they will begin a widespread messaging campaign, encouraging everyone throughout the state to receive the vaccine.

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