Marissa Wheeler takes aim at a spot on Jasper Seale’s arm during the COVID-19 mass vaccination clinic Tuesday at Fairview Christian Church in Carthage. Seale came from Hollister to the clinic because the one in his area he’d planned to attend was called off during the February storm. Wheeler, a student at Kansas City University of Medice and Biosciences in Joplin, was a volunteer.

Health department hoped to deliver 2,200 vaccines during two-day event

Appointments may be available for leftover shots, if there are any, during a small clinic

Prior to the clinic, 12.6% of Jasper Countians had received at least their first shot

A two-day COVID-19 vaccine clinic was held in Carthage this week with the goal of vaccinating 2,200 people.

Tony Moehr, administrator of the Jasper County Health Department, and his staff were assisted by 40 members of the 139th Airlift Wing, Missouri Air National Guard, of St. Joseph, and other volunteers, including students from the Joplin campus of the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences.

Moehr said Tuesday morning he was eager to get as many vaccinated as possible in as short a time as possible.

Until now, he said he had been frustrated by not receiving the number of doses from the state that he was hoping for. 

 

Debbie Darby, of Webb City, a member of the Jasper County Health Department staff, registers people as they come in for their vaccination appointments.

There were still appointments available as of Tuesday, which was the first day of the clinic. If all 2,200 doses aren’t given, Moehr said there will be a small by-appointment clinic next week at the health department office in Carthage. 

To get an appointment go online at https://covidvaccine.mo/navigator/ or call (417) 358-3111. Appointments are open to any Missouri residents. In fact, Moehr said some were coming to the clinic from Kansas City and St. Louis.

The Area Agency on Aging will assist with the registration process for anyone over 65 without computer access. The number to call is (417) 781-7562.

“If you’re in a tier that’s eligible, please get vaccinated,” said Moehr.

Prior to the mass clinic this week, Moehr said 12.6 percent of Jasper County residents (including Joplin) have had at least one dose.

The clinic was held at Fairview Christian Church.

Agencies helping, in addition to the National Guard and KCU were:

  • Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services
  • Missouri National Guard
  • Kansas City University Medical School
  • University of Missouri Extension
  • City of Carthage
  • Jasper County Health Department
  • City of Joplin Health Department
  • Ozark Center – Show Me Hope
  • Mercy McCune-Brooks

Walmart and Walmart Neighborhood Markets donated lunch and water, while Southwest Missouri Bank donated snacks.

National Guard members help guide people to the vaccination station they’ve been assigned to. There were 12 stations Tuesday set up in a hallway at Fairview Christian Church in Carthage.

Hospitalizations are in decline

Preventative measures, such as wearing masks, and vaccinations are credited with a decline in the number of those infected by the coronavirus who are hospitalized.

Freeman Hospital System reported only 10 patients being treated for COVID-19 a media briefing Tuesday. And only one of them is in intensive care.

“This is definitely an improvement,” said Paula Baker, chief executive officer. “At one point we had 66 COVID-19 patients, so numbers are heading in a positive direction. Citizens are to be commended for doing the right things that make flattening the curve possible. And we urge everyone to continue prevention measures including getting the vaccine when it is available to you in consultation with your physician.”

Freeman has been vaccinating 1,200 people every other week, and now that second doses are arriving, it plans to vaccinate 1,200 people every week.

“The limiting factor is availability of the vaccine,” said Jeff Thompson, chief clinical officer. “Demand for vaccine certainly outpaces the supply.”

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