COVID-19 vaccine begins arriving in the District

The first batch of the COVID-19 vaccine arrived in the United States overnight – and it has been sent to several locations in the District.

The District will receive 6,825 doses of the vaccine during the initial allotment.

Six sites throughout the District will receive that initial allotment: Medstar Washington Hospital Center, Howard University Hospital, The George Washington University Hospital, Children's National Hospital, Kaiser Permanente and Medstar Georgetown University Hospital.

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Howard confirmed Monday that the vaccine arrived at their location. The hospital CEO plans on receiving the vaccine on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Kaiser Permanente says they will receive their doses of the vaccine on Wednesday and administer the vaccine to the fire and EMS members Thursday.

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D.C. officials are hoping to make the first phase of vaccinations part of a public-relations effort – with five members of fire and EMS among the first to publically receive the vaccine later this week.

“Today, we have hope. After a long and tragic nine months, help is finally on the way. The First Five are sending a strong message about the importance of this vaccine to protect them, their families and loved ones, their patients and coworkers, and our entire city,” said Mayor Bowser. “Our frontline health care workers and emergency responders have led our community through this pandemic with courage and compassion, and now we are proud to deliver this vaccine to them. Finally, we can work together to end this pandemic. While we must stay vigilant during this nationwide surge in cases, the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter.”

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D.C.’s “First Five” include acting Fire and EMS Chief John Donnelly and Dr. Robert Holman, the Department’s Medical Director, along with Lieutenants Joseph Papariello and Keishea Jackson, and firefighter/EMT Julio Quinteros.

"My worst fear is giving it or passing something to my dad," said Jackson. “I was that person who was definitely against it. I was not going to do it – let me wait a year, let me see what happens. I can’t afford to do that anymore. I can’t. I can’t. So I have to step out on my faith and believe that I’m going to be fine. That is my belief. That’s what I’m going to do.  Again, it’s my race who is leaving here at an alarming rate."