Not enough vaccines in Pratt County

Fran Brownell
Pratt Tribune
Pratt County Courthouse is the site of weekly commission meetings, usually Mondays at 4 p.m.

Pratt County Health Director Darcie Van Der Vyver RN, told Pratt County commissioners last week that 2,895 county residents have taken the survey requesting to receive the COVID vaccine and that the county’s supply is not keeping up with the demand. 

To date, the Pratt County Health Department has received 220 primary doses of the MODERNA vaccine and administered all 220 doses to the Phase 2 population, Van Der Vyver said. 

“We administered 250 secondary doses as well,” she said. “So far over 1,020 people have been vaccinated in Pratt County. We still have over 1,800 people remaining on the Pratt County COVID-19 survey waiting list.”

At the Feb. 1 commission meeting, Van Der Vyver also presented contracts for 2021 with pharmacist Terry Gatlin for $400 per year, Pratt County Health Officer Dr. William Cannata, $300 per month and nurse practitioner Ann Franco for $58 per hour.

Also on Feb. 1, Pratt County Counselor Tyson Eisenhauer reported that bonds for the new Public Safety Building were closed January 29. He said that he has been working on tax foreclosures, with 33 of the 82 tracts now fully redeemed. He reported that the county is required to publish three public notices of property for sale at 516 West First Street before the county selling the property.

County commissioner Rick Shriver reported that the water line for the new Public Safety Building is ready to be put out for bid. He also  proposed changing the county commission scheduled meeting time from 4 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays.

Commissioner Adams said he would like to revisit the salary allotment for county commissioners.  

County Counselor Eisenhauer said the meeting time and salary allotment would require resolutions to be enacted and advised he would research commissioner salaries in other county for comparison.

In other matters of note from the meeting, commissioners:

* heard Pratt Regional Medical Center President and Chief Executive Officer Susan Page and PRMC Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Alan Waites present PRMC’s updated financial statement and sales tax report, commenting that PRMC has done well considering the effect COVID-19 has had on the services they could offer.

* were updated by Pratt County Treasurer Amy Jones on sales tax comparison and bank account balances, who said that sales tax revenue for 2020 was $2,482,129.60, up $114,628.06 from 2019 sales tax revenue of $2,367,501.54.

* listened to a report from Emergency Medical Services Director Scott Harris who said that second quarter 2020 numbers were down due to COVID. Harris also updated commissioners that EMS personnel are working with Pratt Regional Medical Center staff on fall risk assessments to provide recommendations on what people can do to prevent falls in their homes.

* heard a report from Pratt County Economic Development Director Heather Morgan who said that the State of Kansas has revised the format for SPARK (Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas) funds categorization and that she is in the process of recategorizing the 25-page report she had previously submitted.

* were advised by Pratt County Emergency Manager/Zoning Director Tim Branscom that the State of Kansas is not funding the Incident Management Team which will affect smaller counties in Kansas. Branscom is also  updating the Pratt County Emergency Operations Plan.

advising that a meeting is planned this month to finish bylaws affecting zoning for Iuka and Coats.

* approved a request by the county road department supervisor Doug Freund for rebuilding tracks on a county dozer at cost of $14,555.

* awarded a bid for new windows and doors at the Pratt County Law Enforcement Center at $199,576 to Farha Construction of Wichita. Date for completion of the installation was not noted.

* unanimously approved renewal of the county’s members to the Vernon Filley Art Museum for 2021 at $5,000.