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What to know about the Navajo Nation's online COVID-19 vaccine form

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — The Navajo Health Command Operations Center has launched an online registration form for the COVID-19 vaccine which will help guide rollout of the vaccine at facilities under Indian Health Service and tribal health organizations.

The command operations center, an entity under the Navajo Department of Health, is overseeing the three phases of the vaccination rollout in collaboration with health care facilities on and near tribal land.

The form allows users to complete a profile and receive notice when the vaccine becomes available in their group or phase.

"The information you provide will only be shared with the facility or service unit that you identify. They will contact you with an appointment as soon as your group or phase is available. This is only a pre-registration form, you will have to register with the facility or service unit on the day of your appointment," the form states.

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U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps Lt. Cmdr. Erica Harker readies to give the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez on Dec. 31, 2020 at Gallup Indian Medical Center in Gallup.

It is available on the Navajo Department of Health website for COVID-19 information.

The tribe is in Phase 1B of its vaccine distribution plan. Individuals in that category are high-risk patients, people 65 and older, adults living in congregate settings, first responders, frontline essential workers, employees of essential infrastructure or essential businesses, and spiritual leaders such as traditional healer, roadman or pastor.

In comments during the Jan. 21 online town hall organized by the Office of the President and Vice President, the tribe's health department director, Jill Jim, explained the main priority is people 65 and over.

"Phase 1B will take a while. Each facility is going to vaccinate individuals differently, depending on the size of their facility and how much population are in their areas," Jim said.

The health department issued an advisory for 75 communities for uncontrolled spread of COVID-19, based on the number of cases from Jan. 1 to Jan. 14.

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U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps Cmdr. Hosun Persimmon, right, waits to administer the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to leaders from the Navajo Nation on Dec. 31, 2020 at Gallup Indian Medical Center in Gallup.

Gadii'ahi, Hogback, Naschitti, Nenahnezad, San Juan, Sanostee, Sheep Springs, Shiprock, Two Grey Hills and Upper Fruitland were identified.

Other communities listed in New Mexico are Baca-Prewitt, Breadsprings, Casamero Lake, Chichiltah, Churchrock, Coyote Canyon, Crownpoint, Iyanbito, Mariano Lake, Nageezi, Nahodishgish, Pinedale, Ramah, Red Lake, Rock Springs, Smith Lake, Standing Rock, Thoreau, Tohatchi, Torreon, Tsayatoh and Twin Lakes.

Communities outside the state are Aneth, Birdsprings, Black Mesa, Bodaway-Gap, Cameron, Chinle, Coppermine, Cornfields, Cove, Dennehotso, Ganado, Hard Rock, Houck, Indian Wells, Inscription House, Jeddito, Kaibeto, Kayenta, LeChee, Leupp, Lukachukai, Lupton, Many Farms, Nahata Dziil, Nazlini, Oak Springs, Oljato, Piñon, Red Mesa, Red Valley, Rock Point, Rough Rock, Round Rock, Shonto, St. Michaels, Tachee-Blue Gap, Teec Nos Pos, Teesto, Tonalea, Tsaile-Wheatfields, Tuba City and Whippoorwill.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at nsmith@daily-times.com.

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