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Clark, Floyd County teachers need to wait for vaccines

Updated: Feb. 3, 2021 at 3:10 PM EST
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CLARK COUNTY, Ind. (WAVE) - In Indiana, teachers have yet to get their vaccinations, as the state doesn’t recognize educators as a top priority.

“We haven’t suffered a death yet, but everyday you wonder,” Mark Felix with the Greater Clark County Association said. “Who’s going to be that person?”

Felix has been molding the minds of future generations for 26 years. The last academic year he says has been overwhelming. He adds it has like being a first year teacher, but with more anxiety and concern.

“For our governor to not stand up for us, after we’ve done so much and put ourselves on the line for our students and communities,” Felix said. “All these months and now here we are the vaccine is available and we’re still not prioritized.”

Thousands of teachers like Felix can’t get their shot at the vaccine just yet. However, that hasn’t stopped educators from trying to find a way to get back into the classroom.

“There are reports Indiana teachers are going to Kentucky to get vaccinated,” Dr. Tom Harris, Officer at Floyd County Health Department, said.

Floyd said the vaccines are federally allocated, anyone can get vaccinated outside of the state they live in. However, that does more harm than good.

Clark County’s Doctor Eric Yazel said crossing state borders goes against the rules and messes with the population and allocation of vaccines the healthcare systems get.

“We have the capability to get a ton of vaccine out to people but we have to be able to obtain it to give it to people,” Yazel said.

In fact, Clark and Floyd County health leaders say they too expected educators to be in the top tiered groups. However, doctors say it came down to one thing; keeping people alive.

“It really comes down to the state made the highly rational decision to go after the most at risk group; which is people of 65, which is 93 percent of the deaths, that’s a number hard to argue against,” Floyd said.

Educators who are eligible for the current 65 and older grouping can get vaccinated.

More information on Indiana’s vaccination rollout plan can be found here.

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