Vaccines Come To Vashon, Island Interest at Fever Pitch

Here’s what you need to know about Jan. 19 to Jan. 25.


Virus statistics: Public Health – Seattle & King County (PHSKC) reports 95 positive cases of COVID-19 on Vashon since the pandemic began. At press time, there had been one new case since the last edition of this report. The Public Health —Seattle & King County dashboard has closed the data lag gap and now shows both of the island’s two COVID-related deaths.

Phase 1 continues: Our region of the state remains in Phase 1 of the Governor’s Healthy Washington Roadmap to Recovery plan. There are eight regions set out in the plan, and all eight have been continued in Phase 1 according to the weekly announcement from the state Department of Health. Phase 1 imposes the tightest restrictions, including a ban on indoor dining in restaurants.


The overview: COVID-19 Vaccines are starting to become available on Vashon. However, the number of doses remains limited, well short of the demand. VashonBePrepared is supporting the three providers on the island who are approved by the state to do vaccinations. They are Vashon Pharmacy, Sea Mar at Sunrise Ridge, and Vashon Natural Medicine. Because of the limited supply, islanders with mainland health care arrangements may find it faster to take a ferry ride to get vaccinated.

Daily changes: The status of vaccination availability on Vashon has been changing daily, so the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) recommends monitoring the following four websites to see if there is updated information, beyond what we compile in these Situation Reports which are published Tuesdays and Fridays.





Limited, uncertain supply of vaccine doses: It’s important to note that all providers must follow the state Department of Health directives for eligibility. Failure to do so could jeopardize future vaccine supplies. All three island providers were inundated with phone calls and emails when the Governor relaxed the age requirements, making the 65 and older age group eligible — roughly one-third of the island population. Providers are supposed to receive notice of their allocation each week on Monday. However, there is no assurance at this time which providers will receive vaccines and how many doses they will receive. None of our providers can give you a shot if they don’t have a vaccine.

Vashon Pharmacy: The drive-through site behind Vashon Pharmacy went live last week, and lessons learned from the COVID testing site have been invaluable, as EOC Logistics Section, MRC and CERT worked together to provide the Pharmacy with traffic control, check-in and required post-vaccination observation. Pharmacy staff do the actual injecting and operate the appointment system (online is best at or call 206-463-9118 Option 9). Efficiency has climbed with every day of operations, with 130 injections processed in one day after just a few days of ramp-up. The Pharmacy has made a commitment to not book “empty appointments.” They will only open the reservation system and assign appointment times for vaccine doses they know will be arriving or that they already have in hand.

Vashon Natural Medicine: As of press time, owner Kelly Wright said her clinic has not received any vaccine so far and has no information on when stocks might be expected. The website was referring people to the Pharmacy drive-through operation. They plan to notify their patients directly if a vaccine becomes available.

Sea Mar at Sunrise Ridge: Manager Kerry Barnes reports the clinic is considering changes to their dispensing model, which switched last week to a walk-up plan instead of making appointments. As of press time, they have used up all 240 doses they’ve received so far. Vashon’s Medical Reserve Corps and the EOC are working with Sea Mar to see if some form of volunteer assistance might be helpful. As with the other providers, the clinic has faced a tsunami of phone and email queries about the availability of vaccination. The main Sea Mar website maintains a list of their clinic locations, including off-island, where a vaccine is available, at

If you can’t find a vaccination slot: As described elsewhere in this report, interest in vaccination has reached a fever pitch on Vashon. Tempers are short, with a few vaccination seekers even yelling at Vashon Pharmacy staff out of frustration. The manager at Sea Mar clinic reported answering 350 phone calls and hundreds of emails from vaccination seekers. Here’s a solution: Just stick with the basic rules we’ve been following for months. They are easy and cheap steps to keep you safe. Wear a mask. Keep your distance. Clean your hands. Don’t get together with people from outside your household, no matter how much you miss them. And remember that a negative COVID-19 test is a snapshot in time, not a get out of jail free card. These steps are very effective and the next best thing to vaccination until everyone who wants one can get one.


Emergency Operations Center (EOC): The EOC activated in response to the pandemic emergency on March 12, just over ten-and-a-half months ago (323 days). Four operational priorities established by the Incident Commander, Fire Chief Charlie Krimmert, and approved by the VashonBePrepared Board, continue to guide our work: health, food security, housing security, and economic recovery.

EOC focus: Much of the focus has been on vaccination, including a compilation of the vaccination availability survey, logistics to support the Vashon Pharmacy drive-through vaccination project, working with the island’s vaccination providers, coordination between VashonBePrepared elements including Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), and fielding dozens of questions that come in via email, phone and Facebook.

EOC situation section: Strong communication lines have been established with vaccination providers on the island, and that has been helpful in collecting status reports on vaccine dosage supplies and forward planning.

EOC/MRC/CERT: As described above, the support effort for the Vashon Pharmacy drive-through vaccination site has gone live after a fast-track planning and set-up period, including two trial runs. In just a few days, the site reached full efficiency. Although vaccine allocations so far have been minimal, the site will be able to dispense all the vaccine doses likely to be allocated by the state Department of Health.

MRC/Sea Mar: Two initiatives have taken place this week to support the Sea Mar clinic at Sunrise Ridge. One meeting explored the possibility of significantly increasing Spanish language service at the health center. Discussions are also underway regarding the possibility of MRC providing support to the health center’s COVID-19 vaccination program.

Vashon COVID relief fund: A new round of support goes out to Vashon social service agencies this month. Since the Relief Fund operated by VashonBePrepared went live in March last year, it has paid for:

• 2,580 bags of groceries.

• 17,186 meals.

• 120 packets of $20 VIGA farm bucks.

• 153 cases of rent relief.

• 74 basic needs vouchers.

• 357 cases at VYFS and DOVE.

Relief Fund recipient partners have included the Food Bank, School District Nutrition Program, Vashon Youth and Family Services, Interfaith Council to Prevent Homelessness, St. Vincent de Paul Vashon, DOVE Project, and the Senior Center, among others.


This information is compiled from the Situation Reports produced by the EOC Situation Section and provided to The Beachcomber to help islanders stay informed and safe. To receive reports and other emergency information emails, go to