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Will Rogers awaits news on vaccine

SARANAC LAKE — The community at Saranac Village at Will Rogers is waiting on news of when its residents will be able to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Because the facility is an independent living community rather than a nursing home — the distinction being that Will Rogers doesn’t provide health care services — Will Rogers falls under a separate category, Executive Director Jamie Whidden explained Tuesday, Dec. 15. Rather than a nursing home, Will Rogers is classified as a congregate living facility for adults.

That could mean that although the facility registered for vaccines with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention back in October, its residents may have to wait longer for vaccines than nursing home residents. The state’s vaccine distribution plans place high-risk people in the second phase of distribution, and everyone over the age of 65 and those under the age of 65 with underlying conditions in the third phase of distribution.

Whidden said Will Rogers residents will likely receive vaccines distributed by Walgreens, which also provides its residents with flu shots. But it was unclear, as of Dec. 15, when Will Rogers residents would be able to receive COVID-19 vaccines.