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'The urgency is palpable': Dallas mayor requests 10K doses of COVID-19 vaccine per week in letter to state

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson says there's a significant demand for vaccines and that the city is prepared to do what is necessary to vaccinate as many people as it can.

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson sent a letter Monday to the Texas Division of Emergency Management asking for 10,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines per week for the city. 

"The vaccine rollout is critically important to our city, and we are committed to vaccinating as many people as possible," the mayor said. 

In the letter, Johnson states that Dallas is one of the largest cities in the state and there had been a significant demand for vaccines in the North Texas region. 

According to the mayor, more than 140,000 people have registered for the vaccine through Dallas County. 

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"In addition, as the vaccine rollout continues in the weeks and months ahead, we must also contend with vaccine hesitancy in some communities, especially among African Americans," Johnson said.

Dallas, in partnership with the county, opened one of its mega-centers for COVID-19 vaccinations Monday at Fair Park. 

"I believe we can overcome this distrust with a concerted effort to make these safe and effective vaccines readily available in underserved communities, particularly in southern Dallas, that have been hit hardest by the pandemic," the mayor said.

The mayor said although the county is the city's contracted public health provider, Dallas itself ready to help administer the vaccines, as they are already several COVID-19 testing sites established.

Prior to the vaccine rollout in Texas, Johnson wrote a letter in December to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in an effort to prioritize COVID-19 vaccine distribution to people of color. 

"Many of our essential workers are also people of color, which likely helps drive the higher infection rates among Black and Hispanic families," Johnson said.  

Dallas also recently administered more than 2,000 vaccines to first responders as part of Operation Medicine Wheel. The first responders included employees from Dallas Fire-Rescue, Dallas Police Department, and Dallas City Marshals.


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