At this point there’s only “a meager and sporadic supply” of COVID-19 vaccine available in Northwest Georgia as the spread of the virus continues at a high rate.

“We wish we had enough vaccine available for everyone who wants it right now and regret we do not,” Dr. Gary Voccio, health director for the Department of Public Health Northwest Health District said in a release.

“Until the vaccine becomes more readily available, we ask for your patience and understanding. Everyone who desires the COVID-19 vaccine will ultimately be able to get it.”

During a press conference on Friday, Gov. Brian Kemp said state officials are working to distribute around 11,500 doses per day.

Kemp said Georgia’s vaccine distribution program is “making steady progress” but is still constrained by the limited number of doses the state has received so far. He expects distribution “will be ramped up” in the coming weeks.

Kemp’s update on vaccine distribution came as Georgia logged its highest-ever daily total of reported positive COVID-19 cases on Friday at 10,400. Floyd County continues to report 50-60 new infections each day. Those new infections have continued to stress already harried healthcare facilities.

As of Friday, there were 158 COVID-19 positive patients being treated in local healthcare facilities.

Despite that, no new restrictions on businesses or any lockdowns are forthcoming despite the spike, Kemp said, adding he will “have an open mind” in the event “something changes.”

Georgia’s rollout has been complicated by large demand for vaccines from health-care workers in metro Atlanta compared to hospitals and clinics in more rural parts of the state, where Kemp said some front-line workers have refused to take the vaccine. He called their reluctance “unimaginable” and urged everyone to get the vaccine once it’s available.

Around 135,000 vaccines have been administered out of the roughly 554,000 doses shipped to Georgia as of Thursday evening, according to the state Department of Public Health’s website – though Kemp said the website’s data is lagging behind the number of vaccines actually given so far.

Local health departments have been swamped with requests to book appointments Kemp broadened which Georgians can receive the vaccine last week to people 65-years of age and older, police and firefighters.

For those looking to receive a vaccine once it is available can the health department at or go to the Georgia Department of Public Health Northwest Health District website nwgapublichealth.org to register. Once vaccines are available those who have registered will be notified.

“We are uncertain how long that might be,” said Nichole Crick, the district’s health district program manager. “All immunizations will be by appointment only. We cannot accommodate walk-ins until a more reliable and plentiful supply of vaccine is available,” she said.

As more of the vaccine is available, and the state authorizes it for larger portions of the population, it will be available through other healthcare providers and pharmacies, Crick said.

RN-T Editor John Bailey and Capitol Beat writer Beau Evans contributed to this report.

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