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Frontline Essential Workers to Become Eligible Soon and Other COVID-19 Vaccine Updates

Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021

Below is information provided recently by the Orange County Health Department on COVID-19 vaccination, including eligibility soon for frontline essential workers.

Vaccine eligibility

Gov. Roy Cooper announced Feb. 10 that childcare workers, educators and school personnel in pre-kindergarten through Grade 12, including private and charter schools, will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine beginning Feb. 24. Other frontline essential workers listed in Group 3 will become eligible March 10.

Orange County Health Department will work with the county’s two public school systems, private and charter schools, and childcare providers to develop a plan to vaccinate eligible staff. More information will be available soon on the county website,

Frontline essential workers are people who must be in person at their place of work and who work in one of eight essential sectors:

  • Critical manufacturing
  • Education
  • Essential goods
  • Food and agriculture
  • Government and community services
  • Health care and public health
  • Public safety
  • Transportation

See the state’s Deeper Dive ― Group 3 page for more information on this vaccine group. See the Deeper Dive document regarding school and childcare workers in this group.

When to register

The Orange County Health Department continues to register individuals in groups 1 and 2 (healthcare workers and long-term care residents and providers and anyone 65 or older). It will announce plans for registering other essential frontline workers from Group 3 soon.

You can determine which vaccination group you are in by using the state’s online tool, To expedite getting through the vaccine distribution phases:

  • Make an appointment when vaccination for your group has opened.
  • Do not book appointments with more than one provider. First and second doses must be received from the same provider.

Additional vaccine providers

The Orange County Health Department is one of several places to get vaccinated. Find nearby locations to receive a vaccine by using the state’s online tool or by checking the Health Department’s vaccine webpage. Walgreens locations in Orange County will begin receiving vaccine supplies next week, but supplies are very limited.

Need transportation?

Transportation to a vaccine site in Orange County is available if you need it. If you make an appointment for vaccination through the Orange County Health Department, you also will have the opportunity to schedule transportation with Orange County Public Transportation.

Chapel Hill Transit offers transportation to a Health Department site in Chapel Hill and to UNC Health vaccination sites in Chapel Hill and Hillsborough. To book an appointment with Chapel Hill Transit, call EZ-Rider Reservations at 919-969-4979 or complete the online form. You may be required to show proof of your vaccination appointment. See the Town of Chapel Hill’s news release for specific routes and additional information.

Vaccine help center

Got a question concerning vaccines? Call 888-675-4567 to reach the state’s COVID-19 vaccine help center. Hours are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends. Callers can select call back assistance to receive a call when agents are available. The center supports English and Spanish calls and text telephones (TTY). The language line is available for other languages.

In Orange County, information also can be obtained by calling the Orange County Health Department’s voicemail message system at 919-245-6111 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Spanish and other languages are available. Or email can be sent to Vaccine appointments cannot be made through these information methods.