“You’re able to get the vaccine here, you’re also able to talk to somebody if you have concerns about the vaccine,” said Dr. Michelle Medina, associate chief of clinical operations.
The center is located in Cleveland’s predominantly African-American Fairfax neighborhood, part of Ward 6.
“I know that there were a lot of people that we’re hesitant at first, but now that they see their friends, their peers, their neighbors, their leaders, other folks are starting to get the vaccine, I’m starting to see a lot more people willing to get the vaccine and having access to Langston is critical,” said Ward 6 Councilman Blaine Griffin.
He said there is an established connection to the center.
“The residents of the neighborhood have a familiarity with Cleveland Clinic and Langston Hughes and the staff here so there’s a level of trust there.”
Medina said they believe they will be able to accommodate up to 300 to 400 vaccinations a day at Langston. A spokesperson later told us almost 350 people attended Monday.
“It’s safe they do the temperature checks. They’re making sure people have the sanitizer. I see the distance, the 6-foot distance. It’s been safe and just a wonderful job,” said the Rev. Dr. David Cobb Jr. of Emmanuel Baptists Church, located right across the street.
While Medina said the type of vaccine used at this site will vary based on supply and what they get, on Monday they were able to use some of the roughly 1,800 Johnson and Johnson vaccine doses they received from the state.
Griffin said coming once for the one-dose vaccine may make it easier for some in the area.
“A lot of times people only want to come once. It might be work demands, we have a lot of working mothers in the neighborhood. It’s hard for them to get off of work.”
Cobb said they gave rides to those who needed help getting to their appointment.
“We have been working with the Clinic, along with other hospitals, in making sure the community understands that the vaccination is safe and also that we’re gonna do all we can to make sure that everyone has every advantage to do what they need to do,” he said.
This vaccination site is vaccinating people every Monday by appointment only for the foreseeable future. The Clinic said it hopes to open additional community vaccination sites as vaccine supply continues to increase.