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EAMC reduces number of first-dose vaccine appointments

Updated: Feb. 22, 2021 at 6:49 PM EST
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OPELIKA, Ala. (WTVM) - Thousands of people have received their first dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in the past three weeks at the East Alabama Medical Center’s (EAMC) community vaccine clinic.

Now, officials say it is time for many to receive their second shot.

Sonya Mocks received her first dose at the community vaccine clinic last week.

“There were people there, but it worked like clockwork,” she said. “It was a great experience, considering I was there for a vaccination.”

She is now scheduled to get that second dose in a few weeks.

“I’m not as apprehensive about it as I was in the beginning,” Mocks said.

According to EAMC, to accommodate the number of people like Mocks who need their second COVID-19 shot, about 800 of the roughly 1,200 doses EAMC administers daily will go to those receiving a second dose.

“I think about two-thirds will be second doses,” said John Atkinson, EAMC’s PR and marketing director. “So, that does leave about a one-third of shots available for people trying to get their first dose still.”

According to hospital leaders, on March 15, the pattern will switch.

“It’ll be just the other way around,” Atkinson said. “[In three weeks] we’ll have 800 new first doses to be available and only 400 second doses.”

When it comes to long-term plans, officials with EAMC said they plan to keep the clinic open until at least the end of April.

“We’ll just have to evaluate it each month and see how it goes and see if there’s more vaccine in the community by then,” Atkinson said.

Having the clinic open longer is something Mocks said is a good thing.

“As we see more and more people getting vaccinated, then it gives people the courage to say okay, ‘I’m going to go ahead and do it,’” Mocks said. “And when the process is as simple as what I went through, then you don’t mind.”

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