Keeping the Vaccination Momentum Going
Once the huge FEMA vaccination clinic leaves town, then what?
Greensboro is home to one of the largest COVID-19 vaccination efforts in the nation. The massive clinic at Four Seasons Town Centre vaccinates 3,000 people every day. And while it will stay in town through early May, what happens when it leaves?
That is a question Cone Health CEO Terry Akin is contemplating. He and members of Cone Health’s Government Affairs team recently toured the setup along with Guilford County and state officials. “What an amazing gift and resource this is for the citizens in our region, our state and beyond.” Akin said as he walked through the former Dillard’s department store now turned into the indoor portion of the clinic. “It is an incredible complement to our vaccination work with area county partners.” A large cluster of tents outside also allow drive-through vaccinations—a popular option for people signing up.
The FEMA complex will administer around 168,000 vaccinations before likely heading to another part of the county. Akin was at the site to look around and begin thinking about what Cone Health and our close Health Department partners in Guilford, Alamance, Rockingham and other counties might do to preserve some of the infrastructure, benefit from lessons learned, and build on the momentum with our own ongoing vaccination efforts.
Nearly 40% of the vaccinations so far have been given to minorities, which Akin lauded as extremely important given the very diverse makeup of our communities. “The lessons learned here will set us up well for the next vaccination phases,” added Akin. “Soon, most people will be eligible for vaccination. Our community will look to Cone Health and our health departments to take care of them, and this will definitely help us again answer our community’s call.”