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UTRGV begins Moderna COVID-19 vaccine rollout

The University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley began administering the COVID-19 vaccine to specific groups Tuesday.

The university announced in a Tuesday news release they are administering the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine– the second vaccine granted emergency authorization by the federal government –  in Mercedes and Harlingen the day after receiving the vaccine at the UT Health RGV/Knapp Family Health Center in Mercedes and the UTRGV Clinical Education Building in Harlingen.

Jeffrey Castaneda, from Mercedes, was the first person to receive a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the UT Health RGV/Knapp Family Health Center in Mercedes on Tuesday, Dec. 29. Administering the vaccine was Dr. Linda Nelson, a Doctor of Nurse Practice (DNP), RN, pediatric nurse practitioner and senior director of Clinical Operations for the UTRGV School of Medicine and UT Health RGV. (UTRGV Photo by Paul Chouy)


The Moderna vaccinations, by appointment only from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., will continue Wednesday and Thursday at the following locations:

Wednesday, Dec. 30 – UT Health RGV/Knapp Family Health Center, Mercedes and Interdisciplinary Academic Building, Brownsville
Thursday, Dec. 31 — UT Health RGV/Knapp Family Health Center, Mercedes and Clinical Education Building, Harlingen.

The limited supply of vaccines will only be administered to the three groups of individuals who have been prioritized by state health officials to receive the vaccine first which include:
  • Frontline employees who have heightened exposure to the virus or who must remain healthy to support others as cases surge.
  • Individuals ages 65 and older.
  • Individuals ages 65 and younger* who, according to state and federal health care officials, have an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 because they have the following comorbidities :
    Diabetes. Chronic kidney disease, Immunocompromised diseases, Chronic lung diseases, Sickle cell disease, Chronic heart disease, High blood pressure, Chronic neurological diseases, Morbid obesity,
For individuals that fall within any of these groups, please register with UT Health RGV by completing an online form. Individuals with any of the comorbidities listed above will be asked to self-disclose their condition in order to secure an appointment.
UT Health RGV will not be distributing vaccines on a first-come, first-serve, walk-in basis, so as to not lead to long lines and hours-long waits — two factors that could increase exposure to COVID-19 at a time when cases are increasing.

UT Health RGV received a total of 900 doses, of which 500 went to Harlingen and Brownsville, and 400 to Mercedes.

For more information or to fill out the registration form, visit the COVID-19 Vaccine webpage.


  1. Aida G. Orozco on December 30, 2020 at 1:43 pm

    I am a school teacher and have students attending classes face to face.

  2. Blanca Galvan on December 30, 2020 at 2:05 pm

    Joanne called and I have been trying to get contact with her. 18338874873. She said They a vaccine for me on Sunday 1-3-2021. My husband is Samuel GAlvan 6-21-1949 and also is ready too. Please let us know what to do to get the vaccine.

  3. Samuel GAlvan on December 30, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    I got a called from UTRGV. I AM ready for my vaccine.

  4. ROY z OLIVAREZ on December 30, 2020 at 5:40 pm

    I have registered and need vaccine have diabetes and I am a Critical Infrastructure and Security essential employee

    • Denny and Caroline on December 31, 2020 at 6:51 am

      Caroline and Dennis Lind and are both over 70 years would like to sign up for the covid vaccine shot!

      When can we do this?


  5. Georgia Akin on December 31, 2020 at 7:02 am

    I am 79 years old and have had breast cancer high colesterol etc and would like to get my Covid 19 vaccine as soon as possible Please let me know if here and when I can get my injection Thank you

  6. Gloria P. Rodriguez on December 31, 2020 at 11:05 am

    Would like to receive vaccine in Edinburg. I live less than 1mile from UTRGV. I am 71 have bone marrow cancer and receive anemia injections weekly. My husband is 69. He has heart problems and is diabetic. Need appointment have attempted to call but placed on hold constantly

  7. James D Fanning on December 31, 2020 at 1:07 pm

    Hi good folks.
    How quick might I expect a vaccination?
    I am eighty years old.
    Is there any hope that I might receive the vaccine soon?

  8. Steve Pscodna on January 1, 2021 at 4:34 pm

    I am 80 and would appreciate an appointment in Harlingen.

  9. Phyllis Belmore on January 1, 2021 at 4:36 pm

    I am 81 years old and would appreciate an appointment the same time as Steve Pscodna in Harlingen. Thanks.

  10. Angelita Cordero on January 3, 2021 at 7:16 pm

    Health care worker awaiting appointment time. I have online confirmation.

  11. Jose Cano on January 15, 2021 at 5:46 am

    I registered for the vaccine and received a RID #4850948136149312842. When can I expect an appointment for a vaccine injection? I am 71, with coronary arterial disease and type II diabetes. Please inform. Thank you.

  12. Norma Christian Wilson on January 15, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    Both My Husband Jerry Don Wilson and I have registered but we have not heard a word as of yet. I am 72 years old and my husband is 69. I have underlining issues.

  13. Mike Hanna on January 18, 2021 at 9:37 am

    My wife and I are Winter Texans from Iowa the past five years. We are scheduled to be in Flour Bluff (North Padre Island) in February and March. We are both over 65 years of age. Can we sign up to get our vaccines someplace there sometime in early February or would we have to go back to Iowa for our shots?

  14. Arturo Martinez on January 18, 2021 at 12:57 pm

    My wife and I had our first vaccine at the Richard Birchers fair ground in Robstown on Friday, January 15th. We are due for our second vaccine on or after February 12th. Please let me know when We can go get our second vaccine at your location. Your response would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Arturo Martínez (956)750-0352.

  15. Emma Jean Sanders75 and spouse Michael Maynard)69 on January 18, 2021 at 5:47 pm

    We would like to apply for the COVID 19 injection
    We both have multiple Cormobidities, DMII, Hypertension, CardioVascular Disease,, Mobility Issues

  16. Emma Jean Sanders75 and spouse Michael Maynard)69 on January 18, 2021 at 5:51 pm

    Applying for COVID injection. We have Multiple Cormobities Htn DMII Mobility Issues CVDisease

  17. Irma Jean Cantu and Alfonso A Cantu on January 19, 2021 at 11:23 am

    My husband and I both have confirmations for UT Health RGV vaccines for the COVID-19 Vaccines dated December 29, 2020 at 11:02 am and we are both over 72 years of age and he is 76. When are they going to call us to get the vaccine?

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