Mass vaccination clinics provide more doses as COVID-19 cases rise in Ohio

Coronavirus

CLEVELAND (WJW) — On Friday, Ohio started seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases and public health officials in Summit County say the governor is right by calling the fight against COVID “a race.”

“We need to get as many vaccines in as many arms as possible. We are seeing an uptick in the numbers, we never really dropped low enough,” said Health Commissioner Donna Skoda.

They are about to get their own mass vaccination clinic at the Summit County Fairgrounds that Skoda says is planned to run for eight weeks with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

“We’re hoping, we’re supposed to get 5,000 doses per week to start,” she said.

That facility, opening on April 3, joins the Wolstein Center in Cleveland.

Almost two weeks into their operations, Brigadier General Rebecca O’Connor says things are going great.

WJW photo

As of Saturday, they’ve been able to vaccinate more than 62,000 people. Starting April 6, they will be administering the second round of Pfizer doses to those who came the first three weeks.

“It’s really critical because of the scale of this operation that people keep these appointments. When we’re processing 6,000 plus more people a day it’s really difficult to change those appointments,” said O’Connor.

And on Monday, the state opens eligibility to those 16 and up. 

“When a 16 or 17-year-old comes to get their vaccination they do need to be accompanied by a parent of guardian because, there are some consent forms that need to be signed in order for them to get their vaccinations,” O’Connor said.

The same applies to any Summit County clinic that uses Pfizer.

Skoda says while cases are on the rise and people still need to practice the same safety measures, especially with upcoming holidays and spring break, vaccine supply is also on the rise. 

“So far we have seen a significant uptick, and I only expect it to get better,” she said.  

Skoda says the county will be providing transportation to their mass vaccination clinic.

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