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‘Strike Teams’ Helping Vaccination Efforts; How they Work

This outreach program targets vulnerable populations that may face disparities associated with access to vaccines. Smaller vaccination events occur in churches, community centers and other partner organizations.

by Michael D. Pitman, Journal-News, Hamilton, Ohio / March 22, 2021
TNS
(TNS) - Mar. 22—Three thousand people received the novel coronavirus vaccine at the Butler County Fairgrounds last week, and another 3,000 will receive it this week.
 
And as soon as the Butler County General Health District is allocated more of the COVID-19 vaccine, it will increase the number of people it can vaccinate at its Wednesday and Friday drive-thru clinics, said Health Commissioner Jenny Bailer.
 
According to data on Friday from the Ohio Health Department, nearly 74,500 people have started the inoculation process in Butler County. More than 43,300 people have completed the process. Statewide, nearly 2.65 million have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and more than 1.52 million are completely vaccinated.
 
Currently, each drive-thru clinic at the fairgrounds can handle 1,500 people, and when whenever the health district receives an increased supply, "which we're told we will, then we'll go to 2,000 (people per clinic)."
 
But the county health district isn't just inoculating people who live or work in Butler County at the fairgrounds. Bailer said the Butler County General Health District has utilized "strike teams" made up of registered nurses deployed into the community.
 
"On Tuesdays and Thursdays, they're going directly to people who would have a hard time getting to the fairgrounds or who just have other kinds of challenges," she said.
 
This outreach program targets vulnerable populations that may face disparities associated with access to receiving the vaccine, she said. Smaller vaccination events occur in churches, community centers and other partner organizations within the county that are located in high to moderately high social vulnerability opportunities.
 
"As those requests (for smaller vaccination events) come in, we slot them in through our calendar," Bailer said.
 
The mass vaccination clinics for March 31 and April 2 will be posted on the health district's Facebook and Twitter accounts, as well as its website. Appointments are required.
 
Bailer said the vaccination program had been made possible with the Butler County Commission, Butler County EMA and Butler County Fair Board.
 
Doug Turner, Butler County Fair Board president, said it was an easy decision to help, including working with Butler County Emergency Management Agency Director Matt Haverkos and Bailer.
 
"We've done an excellent job in partnering withMatt and Jenny at the county health department, and I think it's work out well," Turner said. "We're very excited and very happy to be of service to the county."
 
HOW TO SIGN UP
 
All mass vaccination sign-up links will be made announced through the Butler County General Health District's Facebook page, Twitter page, and website, health.bcohio.us.
 
The Ohio Department of Health provides a list of all 1,325 locations statewide that offer the vaccine at coronavirus.ohio.gov.
 
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