Appalachian Regional Healthcare System held its first COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Monday for their patients who qualify according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services four-phase rollout plan.

The state is currently in phase 1b, group 1, which includes all adults 75 years or older. ARHS receives periodic allotments of vaccines from the state during each phase, and will focus efforts on established patients of Appalachian Regional Medical Associates as they receive supplies. Those who are eligible, but are not established patients of ARMA can attend vaccination clinics through AppHealthCare or Toe River Health District.

Chuck Mantooth, President and CEO of ARHS, said in a press release that currently, they are asking those younger than 75 to not sign up for a vaccine clinic meant for older folks, as the focus is vaccinating the most vulnerable first. The state of North Carolina has made it clear that anyone who wants a vaccine will eventually be able to get one. ARHS is working to contact ARMA patients by text or email when they are eligible for vaccine clinics. Established patients should visit apprhs.org/vaccine-registration/ to register. Non-ARMA patients should sign up through AppHealthCare at apphealthcare.com/covid-19-vaccinations or through Toe River Health District at toeriverhealth.org/

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AppHealthCare Monday reported 203 active COVID-19 cases in Watauga, the total is now 3275, and there have now been 24 COVID related deaths in the county. Ashe County had 147 active cases, with a total of 1655, and 37 deaths. Alleghany reported 39 active cases Monday, their total is now 774, and there have been 4 deaths in Alleghany. Across the three county district, there are 635 individuals being actively monitored. There have been a total of 113 hospitalizations since the beginning of the pandemic.