Montreat Minute 1/22/2021

COVID-19 Updates

Vaccination Waiting List Available for Those 65 and Over

Earlier this week, Buncombe County initiated a vaccination waiting list for those 65 and older. You may register for the waiting list by calling the Health Department at 828-250-5000 or register online by CLICKING HERE

A Note About Your Vaccination

Many Montreaters have received their first vaccine, which has created various questions about next steps, immunity, and more. In the most recent issue (Jan-Feb) of the AARP Bulletin, the author answered some important questions. We repeat several of those questions for your benefit:

How long after my first vaccine dose do I begin to develop immunity? How safe am I?

The Pfizer vaccine was shown to be only 52 percent effective 21 days after the first dose. That’s not so safe. You need both doses to get to the 95-percent-effective threshold found in the clinical trials by the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. And you need to be patient about it. The vaccines were found to attain effective levels 21 days after each dose in the Pfizer trials and 28 days in the Moderna studies, so you should consider yourself still fully at risk until several weeks after your second dose. You will receive instructions about this from your health care provider when you get the vaccine.

Once I’m fully vaccinated, can I go back to normal life?

No. Everyone- vaccinated or not- will need to continue all current recommendations regarding social distancing, wearing a mask and avoiding travel. This is because up to 10 percent of vaccinated individuals will not be protected from getting COVID-19 and because reinfection, while uncommon, can still occur. And the vaccine itself doesn’t prevent you from contracting the virus; it simply prepares your body to mount a vigorous defense so that if you do become infected, the resulting illness is far less likely to be life threatening.

That’s why the key here is to reach the point were 80 percent of the population has been inoculated. “That’s the real magic number,” DuPrex says. “That’s herd immunity, when you get enough people with antibodies that won’t perpetuate the disease.”

When new cases of COVID-19 decline in the community, officials will issue recommendations about when we can all take off our masks and resume life as it was before the pandemic. Paul Offit, a member of the FDA’s COVID-19 vaccine advisory panel, has said we may have to wait until the fall for that happy moment.

Excerpted from the AARP Bulletin, January/February 2021, p.13

Updates and Reminders

  • The Montreat Tree Board will meet on Tuesday, January 26, 2021, at 9:30 a.m. The meeting location/method is to be determined. Check the website for details.
  • Did you receive your 2021 Town Annual Calendar as well as Mayor Helms’ 2020 Town Highlights letter? If not, contact Angie at [email protected] and request copies.


Do you have Town-related questions you would like answered? If so, please send them to Angela Murphy at [email protected] and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Stay well and have a great weekend.