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How COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed in Houston

Memorial Hermann Health System, Methodist Hospital, Texas Children’s Hospital and Harris Health System have been tapped as the first local distribution sites.

HOUSTON — State officials say 1.4 million doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine are set to be distributed in Texas. The first shipments will go out the week of Dec. 14, according to Gov. Greg Abbott.

RELATED: Gov. Abbott: 1.4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to be distributed to Texas this month

Harris County Public Health is helping to coordinate the rollout locally. Dr. Umair Shah says they need healthcare providers across the Houston area to sign up to administer vaccines.

“It looks like we have had a little over 1,100 providers sign up,” Shah said.

The CDC will decide the exact order of who will get vaccines.

However, Shah says it has already been determined that frontline workers and nursing home residents will be immunized first.

Memorial Hermann Health System, Methodist Hospital, Texas Children’s Hospital and Harris Health System have been tapped as the first distribution sites in the Houston area.

RELATED: Houston's Medical Center likely to receive large portion of first round of COVID-19 vaccines

“What we know is vaccines will be shipped to the healthcare systems themselves, to the hospitals, so they can do what they need to do for their healthcare workers,” Shah said.

Vaccines will also be distributed directly to nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

Other high-risk groups that will be prioritized for immunization include healthcare staff who test for COVID-19, school nurses, essential workers and people with underlying conditions.

Shah says the CDC is expected to give more specific guidance on vaccine allocations next week.

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