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Mobile Vaccine Bus Returns as Blaine County Remains in Moderate Risk Category
Friday, May 28, 2021



St. Luke’s mobile vaccine unit was able to get 256 shots in arms as it made its way through the Wood River Valley two weeks ago.

In one case, a soccer team got vaccinated. Some parents brought their children for vaccines and they ended up getting vaccinated, too, despite any initial hesitation, said Joy Prudek, public relations manager for St. Luke’s Wood River.

To date, 13,486 Blaine County residents and second homeowners have gotten vaccinated out of a population of 21,669. Just over 69 percent of those 12 and older have been vaccinated.

The mobile vaccine unit will be back in the valley from Tuesday, June 1, through Saturday, June 5, to provide boosters to those who received a primary dose of Pfizer.

Those who have not yet been vaccinated will be able to get the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or Pfizer vaccine while the van is in the valley.

The Pfizer dose may be administered to those 12 and older, but those receiving the initial dose this coming week will have to schedule their booster at another location, such as St. Luke’s Hailey clinic. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine can be administered to those 18 and older.

The mobile vaccine schedule:

June 1, Bellevue: The Hunger Coalition, 110 Honeysuckle St., Bellevue, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

June 1, Ketchum: The Meadows, 310 Meadows Drive, Ketchum, from 4 to 8 p.m.

June 2, Ketchum: Wood River Community YMCA, 101 Saddle Road, Ketchum, from 4 to 8 p.m.

June 3, Bellevue: 600 N. Main St., Bellevue, 9 a.m. to noon.

June 4, Shoshone: Neighbors Helping Neighbors, 103 N. Greenwood St., 9 a.m. to noon / 1 to 4 p.m.

June 5, Hailey: Kiwanis Park, west of Balmoral on Laurelwood Drive, Hailey, from 9 a.m. to noon / 1 to 6 p.m.


Blaine County’s risk assessment, according to the Harvard Global Health Institute’s metrics, continues to be moderate.

The county averaged 3.1 new cases per hypothetical 100,000 residents from May 16-22, down from 5.6 average new cases the week before. Its test positivity is 0.69 percent, up from 0 percent.

Three people between the ages of 30 and 39 tested positive while one person 70 and older and one person between 14 and 17 tested positive.


Blaine County Commissioners voted 2-1 on Tuesday to drop its mask mandate. The cities of Sun Valley, Ketchum and Hailey had already repealed their mask requirements following the Centers for Disease control’s decision to allow fully vaccinated individuals to forego masks inside and out.

Commissioners Jacob Greenberg and Dick Fosbury voted to repeal the county’s mask ordinance; Angenie McCleary voted against repealing it.

Even though government entities have repealed the mask mandate, many facilities from Albertsons to the Community Campus still require masks for those inside their facilities. Many individuals have chosen to mask up while in public in case, they say, unvaccinated people are choosing not to wear masks in defiance of CDC guidelines.


Need an incentive beyond good health and life to get vaccinated?

CVS Pharmacies are entering those who plan to receive or have received a COVID-19 vaccine at CVS into a sweepstakes to win one of more than a thousand prizes. Prizes include a week-long cruise on Norwegian Cruise Line, VIP tickets to the 2022 Super Bowl and $5,000 cash prizes for family reunions.


Moderna says its COVID-19 vaccine is 96 percent effective in children ages 12-17. It is in Phase 2 of a study testing the vaccine on children as young as 6 months.

Pfizer plans to seek emergency authorization for children between the ages of 2 and 11 in September. The dosage for the 12- to 17-year-olds is 30 micrograms each given three weeks apart--the same as that for adults.

But Moderna is testing dosages ranging from 25 to 100 micrograms in younger children. Its adult dosages are 100 micrograms.

Nearly four million children in the United States have tested positive for the coronavirus since the pandemic began and more than 300 have died. In contrast, between 75 and 150 American children die of the flu each year, and a hundred die annually from chickenpox.

Right now a quarter of COVID cases in the United States are in young children.

Coeur d’Alene’s Lake City High School is currently experiencing an outbreak with 23 students testing positive in the past two weeks. The school has reinstated masks in light of the outbreak and could go back to hybrid or fully remote learning.

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