Demand for COVID-19 vaccinations increasing in Lee County

Updated: Jan. 25, 2021 at 7:13 PM EST
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OPELIKA, Ala. (WTVM) - The demand for COVID-19 vaccines in Alabama is greatly exceeding the supply of vaccines the state has, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH).

Still, many people are wondering where and how to get vaccinated.

ADPH has an online dashboard where vaccine providers are listed. There are seven spots in Lee County on that list, but not all of those locations currently have vaccines to administer.

Roger Burnett, the owner of Thomas Pharmacy in Opelika, is eager to receive a second batch of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine from ADPH.

“We received our first installment a few weeks back and fairly rapidly gave the doses that we have,” he said. “We’re just grateful we can be a part of the solution to this.”

Other vaccine providers in Lee County include Auburn Urgent Care, the East Alabama Medical Center and the Lee County Health Department.

“I’m convinced all of us are just working together to do the best we can, including the public, to have as many people know about it and get vaccinated so we can turn this around,” Burnett said.

While Thomas Pharmacy is still waiting on more vaccine doses, officials at the Lee County Health Department said they’re offering vaccine clinics on Wednesdays and Thursdays by appointment for qualifying individuals.

According to officials, qualifying individuals include healthcare providers, residents of long-term care facilities, people who are 75 and older, and first responders.

Health leaders said appointments will be from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. To make an appointment, you can call the Lee County Health Department at 334-745-5765. Beginning Monday, any COVID-19 appointments must be made through the COVID-19 hotline number at 1-855-566-5333 on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Burnett said he’s compiling a list now of people who want to get vaccinated. He said they’re able to sort through the list to ensure only those in eligible groups receive the vaccine.

“It’s really just a matter of receiving those doses, and as soon as they’re available we can get them in people’s arms rather quickly,” he said.

According to state health officials, more than 100,000 doses were administered in Alabama last week.

With more doses hopefully on the way, Burnett has a message for the community.

“[I] just ask people to not give up, have patience,” he said. “We certainly need to do exactly what we’re doing. Work hard to get as many people protected as we possibly can.”

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