Vaccine clinic held at Tryon Equestrian Center, no appointment needed

Local News

POLK CO., N.C. (WSPA) – Polk County had a drive-in COVID-19 vaccination clinic on Tuesday in Mill Spring – no appointment needed.

Health officials tell us they administered a total of 515 doses.

The Polk County Health & Human Services team set up the drive-thru first-dose Pfizer vaccination clinic at the Tryon International Equestrian Center.

“This is our first major non-appointment. Most of our stuff has been by appointment,” Polk County Health & Human Services Director Josh Kennedy said.

Kennedy told 7 News there was no residency requirement to get the shot, so they served whomever wanted it.

“16 and over, anyone’s welcome,” he said. “We are welcoming anyone from surrounding counties as well as down south in South Carolina.”

One of those people was Tina Chang.

“It was super smooth. The process was easy to follow. The whole thing took about 5 minutes, and then 15 minutes of just waiting to see if you had any symptoms,” Chang said. “We were in and out, just like that.”

Kennedy said they had 1,170 doses to give out on Tuesday and, for many, an appointment wasn’t necessary.

“We have some folks who have already pre-registered, but we have 500 doses available for unregistered folks today as well,” he said.

“I am elated, actually. I feel like this has been a long time coming and being able to get my first shot feels like I’m halfway there already,” Chang said. “I’m allowing myself to think about what vacation looks like in the future, and, hopefully, summer will feel like a little bit of normalcy, I think.”

Kennedy said they were happy with the turnout.

He said he believes this effort could prevent hospitalizations and save lives.

“The more we can get out of the vaccine, the better off we are,” he said. “We want to get back to our normal life as soon as possible, and this vaccine is really going to help us get to that point.”

“I can’t wait to come back in a few weeks for my second shot,” Chang said.

The clinic will be open again on Wednesday for first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine for folks 18 and older.

Health officials say those who want their first dose should come in the morning, while those who need their second dose should come in the afternoon.

The clinic will be open again on Thursday for those who need their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

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