How the effort to vaccinate the elderly is going in some states

Nurses talk to 103-year-old Luz Collazo before she receives the Covid-19 vaccine at Miami Jewish Health, a senior health care facility, on December 28.

(CNN)As Covid-19 vaccines roll out across the US, some states are already offering shots to people other than health care workers and nursing home residents.

West Virginia recently announced it would start vaccinating some of its elderly population, joining states such as Tennessee, Nevada and Florida in expanding vaccine distribution.
Federal recommendations advise that the first round of vaccines be allocated to health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities, followed by adults aged 75 and older and "frontline essential workers." But, in reality, states are free to make their own decisions on who gets vaccinated when.
Leaders in some states have argued that focusing on vaccinating elderly people rather than younger essential workers could help reduce the burdens on their health care systems.
    Still, though some governors have expanded who can receive the vaccine at this time, when exactly those people get a shot depends on supplies and how localities administer them.
    Here's how the effort to vaccinate the most vulnerable residents is going in some places.

    West Virginia

    Residents aged 80 and older became eligible to receive the Covid-19 vaccine beginning on Wednesday, Gov. Jim Justice announced.
    Doses for people in that age group were being delivered to 82 organizations, including primary care physicians, health clinics and local health departments, Justice said at a news briefing.
    The state is planning several vaccination clinics for people aged 80 and older at National Guard armories and other selected sites around the state, though the clinics have not yet been scheduled.
    But though some elderly people in the state are now eligible for the vaccine, it could be some time before they actually get one -- at the moment, demand is high and supplies are limited. The number of vaccines available depends on how many West Virginia receives each week from the federal government, according to the governor's office.
    "... Patience is urged while the West Virginia National Guard's Joint Interagency Task Force finalizes plans for the widespread distribution of vaccines for West Virginians in this age category," Justice's office said in the news release.
    The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department, which serves the state's most populous county, said it was flooded with eligible residents eager to get a shot after the governor's announcement. By the end of Wednesday, it had run out of its allotted appointment times for the following day.
    The department has since announced that it expects to receive 500 doses for those 80 and older on Saturday. Eligible residents who wish to be vaccinated should call for an appointment starting at 8 a.m. on Friday, the department said.
    Staff at the Berkeley County Health Department pulled a 12-hour shift to coordinate vaccine shipments, schedule appointments and administer doses to eligible members of the community.
    Angie Gray vaccinates former Berkeley County commission president "Admiral" Bill Stubblefield.