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As the state's widened vaccine eligibility goes into effect today, Monday, March 29, Cooke County has opened its COVID-19 vaccine waiting list up to all residents ages 18 and up, officials announced.

All adults are eligible for the vaccine regardless of age, occupation or health status starting today, Texas health officials said last week. The county announced late last week that it would open its waiting list up over the weekend for first dose appointments beginning April 8.

“In the meantime vaccinations might possibly be obtained through our local pharmacies as they receive vaccine,” a notice from the county read, listing Tom Thumb Pharmacy, Hometown Pharmacy, CVS and Walmart Pharmacy.

As of Thursday, March 25, all who had already signed up for the county waiting list had received at least their first dose, according to information from the county.

To sign up for Cooke County’s COVID-19 vaccine waiting list, county residents can visit the Cooke County website at www.co.cooke.tx.us. Click on "COVID-19 Vaccination Sign-up | CLICK HERE" in the red bar at the top of the county homepage. You need an email address, which will be used to contact you later. Officials advise to check your junk or spam folders regularly.

Those who register successfully receive a five-character confirmation code by email. Then when their turn comes, officials reach out by email and follow up with a phone call to schedule an appointment.

If you sign up for the waiting list but later receive your first dose elsewhere, officials ask that you reply to your waiting list confirmation email or call 940-668-5400 so your name can be cleared from the waiting list.

Tom Thumb pharmacy is asking customers who want more information to sign up for notifications online at https://www.tomthumb.com/my-vaccine-communication.html. It's also offering online vaccine scheduling at https://www.tomthumb.com/pharmacy/covid-19.html. CVS is providing information on its website at https://www.cvs.com/immunizations/covid-19-vaccine.

Through Friday, March 26, there were 36 active coronavirus cases in Cooke County, according to the latest available tally provided by the county as of press time. Six of those cases were hospitalized.

A total of 3,658 cases have been recorded, counting active, recovered and fatal cases. Sixty-two residents have died, including a Valley View man in his 60s whose death was announced Friday; and a Gainesville woman in her 70s and a Lake Kiowa man in his 60s whose deaths were both announced Tuesday, March 23.

The county also announced in early March that a woman in her 60s from the unincorporated area of the county had passed away in January with COVID-19. The death of a Gainesville woman in her 80s was announced Feb. 19.

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