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Governor visits hospital in Georgia where first COVID-19 vaccines given to healthcare workers

Gov. Brian Kemp and Ga. Dept. of Public Health Commissioner Kathleen Toomey traveled to Savannah to witness the administrations of the vaccine.

SAVANNAH, Ga. — The COVID-19 vaccines have arrived and the vaccinations are underway in Savannah, according to the governor's office

Gov. Brian Kemp and Ga. Dept. of Public Health (DPH) Commissioner Kathleen Toomey traveled to Savannah to witness the administrations of the vaccine.

It happened at 2:30 p.m. at the Chatham County Health Department

Shipments of the Pfizer vaccine arrived in Coastal Georgia at two public health locations with ultracold freezers required for storage and temperature control of the vaccine. Healthcare workers began receiving the vaccine hours later, according to the DPH. 

Additional shipments of vaccine are expected later this week at facilities in other parts of the state, including metro Atlanta, the DPH said.

The initial shipment contained 5,850 doses of vaccine for individuals to receive their first dose of the two dose series.

The DPH said they are following the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and prioritizing healthcare personnel and residents of long-term care facilities for vaccination.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is expected to give Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine emergency use authorization (EAU) later this week. Once authorized for use by FDA, shipments of the Moderna vaccine could also begin arriving in Georgia next week, the DPH said.

Kemp previously said that vaccines for the general public could still be "months away" and that Georgians should continue to follow CDC guidelines, wear a mask and practice social distancing. 

Toomey said the first shipments will likely include "several hundred thousand doses."