DALLAS — COVID-19 vaccines are in short supply, markedly in rural Texas, and improving your odds of getting the vaccination you want can depend on which line you are standing in.
Erath County Judge Alfonso Campos, in a Tuesday interview with WFAA, updated the situation in his county. He wishes he had better news to share.
"We have elderly residents who want to get it and they want to get it now," Campos said of the phone calls that come into his office in Stephenville every day.
But in a county that's received only 600 doses for more than 42,000 residents, the answers he is able to offer are sometimes hard to come by.
"The options that we're offering just aren't that great right now, because we're not getting the supply of vaccines here locally," he said.
So, if you want the vaccine, regardless the Texas county you live in, where do you go and who do you contact?
The Texas State Department of Health Services Vaccine Availability Map lists locations by county throughout the state: who has available doses of vaccine and who doesn't. In Erath County, for example, only two pharmacies in Stephenville, so far, are listed as having COVID-19 vaccine.
Then, how do you sign up? How do you get in line?
The state's Texas COVID-19 Vaccine Hub Providers page lists vaccine distribution hub locations by county and provides links and information where you can register. County and city leaders suggest to check your local county website. Both Erath and Ellis Counties partner with Tarrant County, where you can sign up and be alerted when it's finally your turn.
"Yeah right now at least you know you are in a line as opposed to not being in a line at all," Campos said. "So, I think it's the best right now to give people some hope."
And remember it's a line that first responders are still trying to get into.
Methodist Health System in Dallas helped Ellis County, offering vaccine to police officers and other first responders who haven't been able to get them yet, including the Midlothian police chief.
"Everything we can do to protect each other is a step we're going to take," said Chief Carl Smith after receiving his vaccination.
Others, like Grayson County in far north Texas have their own online registration page. That's where they recommend the people of Sherman and Denison get in line.
The following is advice from Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins:
"They can sign up with any county in Texas," he said, while visiting the vaccination hub location at Fair Park in Dallas.
Sign up online, but be patient. Experts say it could be late this year before we all get our turn.