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AZD1222 is AstraZeneca's newest COVID-19 vaccine candidate, but here is how it differs from the previous two. USA TODAY

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Shelby County will likely begin receiving doses of the COVID-19 vaccine sometime after December 15, said Dr. Bruce Randolph, Shelby County Health Officer, in an update to county commissioners Monday.

The Health Department will receive more than 22,000 doses, Randolph said.

The county’s hospitals will also receive the vaccine, Randolph said: Baptist Memorial Hospital will get 1,950 doses, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital will get 1,460 doses. Methodist Le Bonheur Germantown will get 1,220, Methodist University Hospital will get 2,190 doses, Methodist North Hospital will get 730 doses and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital will get 3,400 doses.

COVID-19 vaccine:Shelby County could get the COVID-19 vaccine in a few weeks. Here’s what would happen next

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“This vaccine is free to everyone, whether you have insurance or not, everyone can have the opportunity to receive it if you so choose,” Randolph said.

The vaccine will be rolled out in phases, first prioritizing hospital employees, first responders and those working at long-term care and assisted living facilities who are at greatest risk of exposure. Phase 1B will include other healthcare providers, while phase 1C will include teachers, correctional officers and others at high risk, Randolph said.

Katherine Burgess covers county government and religion. She can be reached at katherine.burgess@shujwhcb.com, 901-529-2799 or followed on Twitter @kathsburgess.

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