Thank you for your patience and partnership throughout this pandemic. You have played a key role in ensuring we continue to fulfill our mission to protect children and strengthen families so they flourish.
We know the past 10 months have required a lot of flexibility and adaption from you all, as we navigated through the ever-changing protocols, policies, and guidance required to keep our families, providers, and staff safe.
With the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine currently happening across the state based on guidance set by the Department of Health, we are taking appropriate steps to ensure our critical staff have access to the vaccine, keeping everyone safe.
Gov. Jay Inslee announced Washington is now in Phase 1b of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution. This will increase the number of people who have access to the vaccine, including:
- People over the age of 65.
- All people 50 years or older in multigenerational households (homes where individuals from two or more generations reside, such as an elder and a grandchild).
This is in addition to populations eligible during phase 1A, including health care workers at high risk for COVID-19 infection, first responders, people who live or work in long-term care facilities, and all other workers in health settings who are at risk of COVID-19.
When will I be eligible to receive the vaccine?
Some of our services were eligible in Phase 1A, the remainder of our array of services (including foster parents, congregate care, HV, CIHS, ESIT, child care, ECEAP, and other similar services…) will be eligible in Phase 1B2/1B4. This incorporates all of the services that require sustained, direct, interactive, in-person contact with children and families. The difference between the two phases will be based on age. To be eligible for Phase 1B2, you must be over 50 years old. The rest of the workforce will quality under Phase 1B4.
How will we know when it’s available and where do we go to receive it?
The Department of Health (DOH) website has a great tool to assist in identifying vaccine locations in your area. Once the DOH or Governor’s Office announces the phase in which you are eligible to receive the vaccine, you can visit your local vaccine location. The processes to receiving the vaccine vary by location. Follow the directions on the website for your chosen location.
If I get vaccinated, do I need to continue wearing a face mask and social distance?
Experts are studying if the vaccine is successful in limiting symptoms and transmission or only symptoms. For this reason, among others, masks and other mitigation strategies like physical distancing will be in effect for the foreseeable future regardless if you are vaccinated or not.
Will DCYF require me to get the COVID-19 Vaccine?
DCYF will not require staff, caregivers, providers, or the children and youth in our care to get vaccinated.
As always, contact your health care provider for personal vaccine information and to determine what phase you fall into based on your health history. For more information, visit the DOH COVID-19 Vaccine page.