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H-E-B pharmacies are among those receiving COVID-19 vaccines, and the Texas grocery chain has opened an online scheduler for customers to make appointments.

However, patience will be needed, H-E-B officials said.

“Currently, H-E-B has been allocated a very limited supply of the vaccine by the state of Texas,” said Senior Director of H-E-B Pharmacy Donna Montemayor in a video on the company’s website. 

She said H-E-B pharmacies are focused on vaccinating individuals in the Phase 1A category. The state of Texas is vaccinating residents in phases.

Phase 1A includes, but is not limited to, people in hospitals or similar settings who work directly with COVID-19 patients, first responders, home healthcare workers who care for vulnerable and high-risk patients, long-term care facility staff and residents, and school nurses.

As of Tuesday, Jan. 12, many of the H-E-B pharmacies that received doses of the vaccine were moving through waitlists for healthcare workers.

“While we can vaccinate individuals in 1B at the same time, we simply do not have the supply to do so yet,” Montemayor said. Those in Phase 1B are all adults ages 65 and older as well as people 16 years and older who have a chronic medical condition that puts them at an increased risk for severe illness if they contract the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. 

Montemayor said H-E-B is working with the state of Texas to acquire more vaccines.  

“Until then, we ask for your patience and understanding,” she said.

People who fall under the 1A and 1B categories can check the H-E-B vaccine scheduler for availability and appointments. H-E-B pharmacies only give vaccines through scheduled appointments and do not accept walk-ins.

When the COVID-19 vaccine becomes available to the general public later in the year, H-E-B officials said their pharmacies will partner with the state of Texas and the federal government to administer doses following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention distribution schedule.

Check the H-E-B newsroom for updates on its COVID-19 vaccine distribution and availability.