PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - Metro-area counties say they are making a more considerable effort to get members of the 1A group vaccinated for COVID-19 more quickly and have rolled out a new survey to assist in that.
This comes as many local healthcare workers say it's been a struggle to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Jammie Treon falls into the 1A group. She says before Monday, no answers have been available about how to get the vaccine.
"I'm the one coming into the communities. I'm the one in the high-risk environment in the communities and compromised patients' homes, and yet I haven't been offered a vaccination," she said.
Treon works in home health and says after many unanswered questions and requests, clinicians she works with have finally been able to partner with a hospital to get vaccines. However, she wonders why it took so long and why her office had to work hard to make it happen.
"I feel like somewhere along the line, we were not prioritized. I feel like we've been misled, and the ball's been dropped, and I'm not sure who did it," said Treon.
Several metro-area counties hope to provide some relief. Multnomah, Clackamas, Washington and Columbia Counties introduced a new survey on Tuesday. That survey allows clinics or offices that fall into the 1A group and is not associated with a large hospital to fill out to get vaccines.
"We're working very closely with the hospital systems to see week by week how much capacity do those hospital systems have, and we're sort of in an orderly way working through the list of people who signed up on that survey," said Kim Toevs with Multnomah County Health.
The survey partners 1A workers with large hospitals that can get everyone vaccinated more quickly. It's good news for many who have been asking for weeks about how to get their vaccine.
Treon says she wonders why something like this wasn't immediately available when the vaccine came to Oregon.
"I'm glad it's available. I'm glad there's resources now," she said. "It does feel like it's a little bit too late, especially for the patients that have already contracted it and the healthcare workers."
Multnomah County did acknowledge that it has taken longer to find 1A workers and get them vaccinated than in other counties around Oregon. They said that is because the metro area has such a large population.