Larger COVID-19 vaccine events growing in Butler County: How to sign up

Lynn Hanck, right, from Mercy Health, gives a vaccine to Allison Horn. Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
Lynn Hanck, right, from Mercy Health, gives a vaccine to Allison Horn. Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

A COVID-19 vaccine clinic this at the Jungle Jim’s Oscar Station facility in Fairfield is the latest in a growing number of larger-scale efforts that have increased in Butler County in recent weeks.

This two-day mass clinic, which will continue today in Mercy Health’s efforts to vaccinate another 1,200 people, joins the twice-weekly events held by the Butler County General Health District, and the weekly drive-thru clinics held by the city of Hamilton Health District, both at the Butler County Fairgrounds.

These clinics augment vaccination efforts by areas hospitals and health districts, including Atrium Medical and the city of Middletown Health District.

Kendra Chesnut, right, from Mercy Health, gives a vaccine to Matt Seiter. Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
Kendra Chesnut, right, from Mercy Health, gives a vaccine to Matt Seiter. Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

“Vaccinating the public is no easy task,” said Jennifer Bailer, Butler County health commissioner, of the largest vaccine campaign in the country’s history. “It is exciting to see the efforts and the percentage of those vaccinated steadily increase each week.”

The following are vaccine providers throughout Butler County, and appointments can be scheduled through their websites:

As of Tuesday, more than 2.22 million Ohioans have started the vaccination process. This mirrors the inoculation numbers in Butler County, where 28.2% of the county’s population have started the process and 15.2% are fully vaccinated.

Mercy Health spokeswoman Nanette Bentley said second-dose appointments will be scheduled when patients receive their first Moderna dose. As of late Tuesday afternoon, 75 of the estimated 600 appointments for today were still available at the COVID-19 vaccine clinic at Oscar Station. Mercy Health patients can schedule through their MyChart and the general public can schedule through the hotline number, 866-624-0366. The clinic runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. today.

Atrium Medical Center in Middletown has hosted public vaccine clinics at Greentree Health Science Academy and Countryside YMCA in Warren County. Hospital spokeswoman Jennifer Burcham said officials are planning more vaccine clinics in Warren County.

“Our focus is making sure underserved communities have access to the vaccine,” she said.

Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
Mercy Health-Fairfield Hospital offered first-dose vaccinations at Jungle Jim's Oscar Event Center in Fairfield Tuesday, April 6, 2021, and will offer them from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It's estimated 1,200 people, 600 on Tuesday and 600 on Wednesday, will receive the first-shot of the novel coronavirus vaccine. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Mercy, Atrium and other area hospitals are providing vaccinations outside the mass clinics, as are some pharmacies, like Community First Pharmacy and certain Kroger, CVS and Walgreens locations. A complete list can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov.

The goal is to inoculate enough people in the country to develop what’s known as herd immunity, which happens when there are enough people vaccinated from COVID-19 which limits or makes spread unlikely.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden, said in a recent interview with CNBC there needs to be at 75 to 80-plus% of people in the country to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity. However, the New York Times reported he cited 60 to 70% early on in the pandemic.

The Health Collaborative is hosting “Get Out the Vax” weekends in the 15-county area, which includes Butler, Warren and Hamilton counties. Their goal is to have a region-wide movement to vaccinated 80% of people eligible to receive the vaccine (16 and older).

“Get Out the Vax” weekends are set for the second and fourth weekends in April and May.

According to the Health Collaborative, around 35% of those eligible have been vaccinated, which officials say is “a good starting point” to achieve the 80% mark.

“Reaching that 80% milestone will bring us a big step closer in defeating the virus in our region,” said Craig Brammer, The Health Collaborative president and CEO. “We are beginning to see the benefits of getting vaccinated, but barriers need to be removed so every community has access.”

Regional attractions are also joining in the effort, according to The Health Collaborative. The Cincinnati Reds are offering discounted tickets for Monday through Thursday games for people who show vaccination verification.

The first “Get Out the Vax” weekend is Saturday and Sunday. For more information, visit www.testandprotectcincy.com.

Mercy is not planning another mass vaccination clinic at this time, but Bentley said the hospital is making vaccines available at their regular locations for the “Get Out the Vax” effort.

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