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Family Struggles To Find Coronavirus Vaccine For Homebound 98-Year-Old Woman

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) --- The coronavirus vaccine has been hard to come by for older people who have trouble getting out of their homes.

Raymond Bukauskas has been searching for a homebound vaccine shot.

"I'm looking for hope that we can find help," Bukauskas said.

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The 95-year-old is a part-time caretaker for his 98-year-old wife, Jeanne. They've been married for 65 years.

Raymond has tracked down the coronavirus vaccine. Jeanne has not received the vaccine yet.

"God gave us a good chance to stay together, but I was looking forward to having her vaccinated, just to be on the safe side," Raymond said.

Jeanne is bedridden, and the family has been searching for a shot that can be administered inside of their home.

"It is available, but only if you can get to them. If you can't get to them, they can't get to you," said Clare Kalmbach.

Kalmbach says they've made calls to several health facilities, but no luck.

An Allegheny County official said vaccinations of homebound individuals are in future plans for the Allegheny County Health Department, but there's no definitive timeframe due to a limited supply of the vaccine.

"I can't find any answer, I can't get any help. I get letters and call 2-1-1. I can't get any progress," Kalmbach said.

Plenty of companies help find vaccines and can help with transport, but those aren't the answers the family is looking for.

"They give me the same answer. 'We feel sorry for you, thank goodness, but we're working on it.' It stops there. The action has to come," Raymond said.

They're pushing for the help of a vaccine sooner rather than later. The family said another reason they want Jeanne vaccinated is to get caretaking help.

"Any kind of methods that could bring that about would make me calmer, more relaxed and overjoyed," Raymond said.

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