Can snowbirds get the vaccine? Which phase of distribution am I in? Answering more of your FAQs

Forging Ahead: Answering your questions about the COVID-19 vaccine process

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - So much is still up in the air about the COVID-19 vaccine, but WMBF News is forging ahead to find you the answers to your questions.

A common question is: when will certain elderly populations be included in the distribution rollout based on age alone?

Before South Carolina received its first allocations of the vaccine, Gov. Henry McMaster went into further detail of what Phase 1-A, Phase 1-B, Phase 2, and Phase 3 could look like here in the state during a media briefing.

LIST | COVID-19 vaccine distribution phases, who receives vaccine in each phase

DHEC has said that these descriptions are “provisional examples of possible groups of people who could receive the vaccine in each phase,” but that this information could change based on the CDC and its advisory committee’s recommendations.

During the briefing, McMaster said people who are 75 years of age and older would be included in Phase 1-B, while those 65 years of age and older could be included in Phase 2.

The CDC’s advisory committee will be meeting this weekend to discuss and vote on recommendations for not only Phase 1-B but also Phase 1-C, which hasn’t been specifically drafted in South Carolina’s plan yet.

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DHEC officials said they expect the state to transition to Phase 1-B possibly by the end of January or early February.

It could take a few more months before we reach Phase 3, where the vaccine would be available to the entire population.

Another group of people familiar to the Grand Strand - snowbirds, or people who vacation in the area for part of the year. Some have asked if those from out of state would be eligible to be vaccinated in South Carolina.

DHEC says yes. According to the department, DHEC will not require proof of permanent residency in order for someone to be vaccinated. So essentially, if a person is visiting South Carolina when they’re eligible for the vaccine, then they will be allowed to get it.

WMBF Investigates is bringing more of your questions to DHEC and local hospital leaders during a live Forging Ahead Virtual Town Hall this Thursday at 8 p.m. You can stream it live on Facebook, WMBFNews.com, Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Firestick.

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