The Wilkes County Health Department expects to have enough Moderna vaccine for administering over 1,100 first or second doses late this week, said Wilkes Health Director Rachel Willard.

This includes 600 doses for a drive-through first dose clinic by appointment only at Lowe’s Park at River’s Edge in Wilkesboro Thursday. To make an appointment, call the health department at 336-990-9950.

Willard said the another 300 doses on hand will be administered to people in “historically disadvantaged communities,” primarily minorities. She said Monday that the health department is working with “various community gatekeepers” to reach and vaccinate people in these communities Thursday.

Willard said any vaccine for first doses left over by the end of the week will be administered Monday.

Late last week, the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services announced an increased emphasis on vaccinating people for COVID-19 in historically disadvantaged communities. Many of these communities have lower COVID-19 vaccination rates, largely due to problems with transportation and communication.

Willard said the health department will have enough Moderna vaccine for giving over 200 second doses by appointment only in a clinic starting at 10 a.m. Friday at Lowe’s Park at River’s Edge. This drive-through clinic is for people who received first doses of Moderna on or before Jan. 8. The health department asked that people not arrive before 9 a.m. and no later than 11:30 a.m.

A drive-through second dose clinic for people who received first doses of the Moderna vaccine on or before Jan. 15 is scheduled Feb. 12 at Lowe’s Park at River’s Edge.

Willard said Friday that about 85% of people who received first doses of Moderna at Wilkes Health Department clinics had received their second doses. Nearly 3,000 people had received first doses at Wilkes Health Department clinics by Friday.

Appointments for second dose vaccinations can be made by calling the health department at 336-990-9950. People with appointments for second doses need to bring their white vaccine cards to the clinic.

The Wilkes Health Department is still only vaccinating people in groups one and two of the state’s vaccination plan. These include people 65 and older and people in health professions with greater potential to be exposed to people with COVID-19.

More details are on the health department website at wil kescounty.net/617/ Vaccine-Clinic.

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