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Vaccines still available at 11 parish locations

The first recorded case of COVID-19 was seen in Washington Parish one year ago to this date — on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.

In the 365 days since, the parish has seen 4,168 cases and 124 deaths, according to statistics from the Louisiana Department of Health as of Tuesday afternoon.

But there is good news. There are now 11 locations in Washington Parish that are distributing COVID-19 vaccinations. In addition, the state of Louisiana has some of the nation’s least strict requirements to receive the shots.

The list of those eligible to receive the vaccine now includes anyone between the ages of 16 and 64, who has at least one of the health conditions that make them at a greater risk for COVID-19. All pregnant citizens, regardless of age, are also now eligible. All citizens 65 and older remain eligible, regardless of health conditions or workforce employment.

The minimum age for the Pfizer vaccine is 16, and the minimum age for the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines is 18.

The health conditions required for citizens 16 through 64 years of age include the following: cancer; chronic kidney disease; COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease); Down syndrome; heart conditions including but not limited to heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies; immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant; obesity (body mass index of 30kg/m2 or higher); sickle cell disease; current or former smoker; type 2 diabetes mellitus; asthma (moderate-to-severe); cerebrovascular disease (affects blood vessels and blood supply to the brain); cystic fibrosis; hypertension or high blood pressure; immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines; chronic liver disease; overweight (BMI greater than 25 kg/m2, but less than 30 kg/m2); pulmonary fibrosis (having damaged or scarred lung tissues); severe neurologic conditions such as dementia; thalassemia (a type of blood disorder); or type 1 diabetes mellitus.

Those in the newest eligibility group who are seeking an appointment for a vaccination must fill out the “Medical Risk Factor Self-Attestation Form” located on the Louisiana Department of Health’s website at ldh.la.gov (direct link is ldh.la.gov/assets/oph/Coronavirus/marketingmaterials/COVID19-Vaccine-Attestation-Form.pdf).

The LDH has published the list of participating providers, along with their locations and contact information, on its website at covidvaccine.la.gov. In addition, residents can call 211 to find a vaccine provider near them.

Eligible residents must contact a participating provider and make an appointment with them. Patients who arrive without an appointment will not be vaccinated. LDH cannot make appointments for patients; only providers can.

According to the LDH, approximately 9.74 percent of Washington Parish’s population of 46,457 people has already been fully vaccinated — a total of 4,524 residents. Another 3,196 residents have received a first dose but have not yet received the second.

Washington Parish locations that have received the vaccinations included the following, as of Tuesday afternoon:

  • Sumrall’s Pharmacy — 30304 Highway 21, Angie (phone number is 985-986-4433).
  • Our Lady of the Angels Hospital — 433 Plaza St., Bogalusa (online appointments only at www.fmolhs.org/coronavirus/in-it-to-end-it-covid-19-vaccine).
  • Rocky’s Med Shoppe, 133 Cumberland St., Bogalusa (985-205-4700).
  • Walgreens #09997 — 217 Superior Ave., Bogalusa (online appointments only at www.walgreens.com/covid19vac).
  • Walmart Pharmacy — 401 Ontario Ave., Bogalusa (online appointments only at www.walmart.com/covid vaccine).
  • Washington Parish Health Unit — 626 Carolina Ave., Bogalusa (985-732-6615).
  • Creel’s Family Pharmacy — 26496 Highway 62, Franklinton (on Facebook, or call 985-848-5555).
  • Rawls Pharmacy — 36009 Highway 38, Mt. Hermon (online at www.rawlspharmacy.com, or call 985-877-4700).
  • Nielsen’s City Drug Store — 330 Austin St., Bogalusa (985-732-2561).
  • Forshag’s Drug Store, 1919 Main St., Franklinton (985-839-4486).
  • RxRemedies, 1723 Main St., Franklinton (985-839-4384).