Coronavirus Skagit

With the COVID-19 vaccine becoming easier to find, several Skagit County providers are offering shots to those without appointments.

Skagit County Public Health is planning a special drop-in clinic Saturday in Burlington, then offering drop-in clinics every Thursday at the Skagit County Fairgrounds, said county spokesperson Laura Han.

Several pharmacy chains, including Walmart, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Safeway and Albertsons, also announced this week they will offer vaccines on a walk-in basis.

From noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, Public Health will host a clinic in Burlington in front of the Children’s Museum of Skagit County, and will hopefully bring in those going about their daily activities who haven’t had a chance to make an appointment, Han said.

On Thursday, May 13, the county-run vaccine clinic at the Skagit County Fairgrounds will have about 300 doses available on a walk-in basis from 1 to 7 p.m.

Then each Thursday after that, a walk-in clinic will be held at the fairgrounds.

“The less planning you have to do and the rearranging of your day you have to do, the easier it is to get vaccinated,” Han said.

Han said if the county has unused doses available at the fairgrounds any of the other five days a week the clinic is open, the county will make them available to walk-ins.

Public Health will be posting each morning on its Facebook and Twitter pages the number of doses that aren’t yet claimed by an appointment that day, she said.

The rate of vaccination has slowed dramatically in the past two weeks, now that the most eager individuals have gotten their shots, Han said.

This means providers need to change their strategies to target those — mainly ages 20 to 40 — for whom vaccination hasn’t been a priority, Han said.

While the risks of COVID-19 are lower for this demographic, the vaccine will still reduce the risks significantly, while also protecting the community by reducing spread of the virus, she said.

“Vaccination is the only way out of this pandemic,” she said.

— Reporter Brandon Stone: bstone@skagitpublishing.com, 360-416-2112, Twitter: @Brandon_SVH

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