More doses for Jackson County’s drive-thru vaccine clinic

CENTRAL POINT, Ore. — Jackson County vaccinated over 2,500 people on Thursday and volunteers were back at it again Friday morning. Newly vaccinated people NBC5 News spoke with said they felt fine after getting the vaccine. However, the main feeling at the Expo on Friday was relief, with many people excited to get back to some sense of normal.

“It was an excellent experience. I got in at the right time and got right in and right out,” said Providence urgent care employee Craig Kameich. He said it took longer for him to drive through the maze of cones at the Expo than actually receiving his first dose. On day two, Jackson County called its drive thru COVID-19 vaccination clinic ‘a success.’ “The event was highly successful,” said incident manager for the event Steve Lambert. “We exceeded our target of 2,000 vaccines a day.”

On Thursday, the County said it vaccinated over 2,500 people, although only roughly 1,800 pre-registered. Lambert said it was “a great first day of getting our community vaccinated and hoping to get our community back to reopening and back to normal.” The Vice President of Quality and Patient Safety from Asante, Holly Nickerson said the other 700 plus people were drive ups and registered at the event.

“Because this is moving so smoothly, our teammates from Providence are supporting giving more vaccine,” said Nickerson.  The Chief Executive of Providence Medford Medical Center said because the clinic is going so well, it will be providing up to 3,500 additional vaccines.

“What would be wonderful is if we get enough vaccines into enough arms that we never go back up again,” said County Medical Director Dr. Jim Shames.  Some people who were vaccinated on Friday said they’re feeling hopeful, but are ready for things to go back to normal. Educator Julie Brunson said, “I’m feeling great. I feel really excited and happy that we have this opportunity to get vaccinated.”

Echoing the same sentiment, Kameich said, “I’m desperate for life to get back to normal, whatever it takes to go back to normal. ” Asante said there are still time slots available for Saturday’s vaccination event. If you are in phase 1-A, an educator or childcare provider, you can register through Asante’s website.

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