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Loudon County educators receive COVID-19 vaccine during vaccination event

Teachers in the county received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday.

LOUDON COUNTY, Tenn. — Usually, school nurses see students with scrapes, bruises and upset stomachs. On Saturday, they saw teachers instead.

They took part in a COVID-19 vaccination event, where educators received the first dose of the vaccine at Loudon Municipal Park Saturday morning. School nurses helped the health department administer the vaccine throughout the event.

On Feb. 22, the Tennessee Department of Health expended vaccine eligibility to people in Phase 1b, as well as everyone 65 years old or older. The new phase includes teachers, administrators and other staff members of kindergarten through 12th-grade schools and child care facilities. Operations personnel of first responder agencies are also eligible.

While the eligibility is expanded, people who were eligible in earlier phases are still able to get the vaccine. Tennessee Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey said the state still recommends that providers prioritize the vaccine for the oldest and the sickest patients because they are most at risk from the virus.

Anderson County Schools also held a vaccination event for teachers on Friday. More than 600 staff members gathered inside of a school gym for the shot.