OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Oklahoma City Public Schools officials are working to finalize a COVID-19 vaccine deployment plan for school district staff, a plan that involves obtaining vaccines through a third-party provider.
OKCPS Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel issued a statement Tuesday on his school district initiative to get school personnel vaccinated.
McDaniel said the Oklahoma City-County Health Department is still vaccinating healthcare workers as part of Phase 1 of the state’s vaccine rollout plan, as well as first responders and elderly community members over the age of 65 as part of Phase 2.
However, OKCPS officials are working to obtain vaccine doses for school officials through Passport Health, a third-party provider.
“While [OCCHD officials] continue with this important work, OKCPS has also begun working with Passport Health, a private contracted third-party provider, to host a closed Point of Distribution (POD) where we can make the vaccine available to OKCPS staff at a designated district facility. It is important to note that the vaccine they are making available is from a private source and is not part of the state-allocated vaccine supply. The vaccine will be offered to staff at no cost,” McDaniel said in a statement.
School officials set Feb. 12 as the target date for the first OKCPS POD.
“However, it is important to note that the date is 100% dependent on our access to vaccine doses via Passport Health. We will share more logistical details, including how to sign up, with you soon,” McDaniel said.
Vaccine allocation is expected to be intermittent and limited, according to McDaniel.
“Public health officials have asked district leaders to prioritize distribution for staff in a way that mirrors the prioritization hierarchy being used at the state and local level, while also considering our district’s unique planning factors such as the OKCPS Return To Campus schedule and/or the amount of daily interaction with students within certain teams/positions. We will share more information with you regarding tiers in the coming days,” McDaniel said.
Although OKCPS officials are working to set up vaccinations through Passport Health, school staff members who are interested in the vaccine are encouraged to to also pre-register with the Oklahoma State Health Department using their online portal.
“Pre-registering will help keep you informed of public PODs available to you,” McDaniel said. “Those interested in receiving the vaccine should take advantage of your first opportunity to do so — whether that’s with OKCPS or via a state or local POD.”