Flu shot

Theresa Marshall, public health nurse at Pickaway County Public Health, administers a flu vaccine to a patient during PCPH’s drive-through clinic. The event was held Wednesday at Ted Lewis Park as a test run for when a COVID-19 vaccine is made available to the public.

CIRCLEVILLE — In conjunction with other agencies, Pickaway County Public Health held a drive-through flu vaccination clinic at Ted Lewis Park on Wednesday.

Adam Negley, health commissioner, said it was a great day to vaccinate the public.

“We’ve had great weather and we’ve lucked out to be able to provide this outreach service to Circleville and the surrounding area,” he said. “A drive through clinic is the safest way to provide vaccinations during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The park was set up in several stations with those operating the clinic doing their part to maintain social distance and wearing proper personal protective equipment. The Circleville Police Department and Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office was on hand to provide traffic assistance.

While the drive-through event is over, Negley said vaccinations are still available for the public through PCPH.

“Give us a call and we’ll be happy to set you up with an appointment to get you vaccinated,” he said. “We are also planning to have another clinic at the end of the month and you can check our Facebook and website later for more information on that.”

Negley said insurance for the event isn’t required and that there could be a fee up to $15.

“We won’t refuse anyone regardless of ability to pay,” he said. “If you have insurance we ask that you bring your information with you. Otherwise, its just a sliding scale where we ask up to $15 depending on the amount of income you have.”

Darrin Flick, Emergency Management Agency director, said he and his office were present to support PCPH.

“We’re here to provide the support, as we have been doing during the entire COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure they have everything they need to provide a safe and secure vaccine ,” he said.

The event, aimed at helping inoculate the public against the flu was also a test run for when a future COVID-19 vaccine is available to the public.

“Ultimately this is a dry run for us here in the county getting ready for when the vaccine comes for COVID-19,” Flick said. “We’re going through the steps on how to administer the vaccination for whoever wants it in Pickaway County. It’ll be a little more logistically challenging to vaccinate 60,000 people versus the few hundred we have here. All the lessons we learned we’ll use to making it smooth and as safe as possible when that happens.”

Box65, Pickaway County’s scene support unit, Harrison Township first responders, volunteers from Ohio Christian University and the Medical Reserve Corps were also at the event.

“It’s truly a inter agency success in terms of getting everyone together,” Flick said. “With COVID-19, its been everyone on deck helping each other out and coming together to make things like this happen. We appreciate the support from the agencies.”

Flick said he and PCPH will come together to talk about what they might take away from the event but the biggest boon to them was planning it.

“We’ve learned a lot in terms of setting this thing up from directional signs to making sure we’ve got bathrooms to extension chords,” he said. “All those little things you don’t necessarily think about this is a great opportunity to work those kinks out now instead of when you’ve got 60,000 people you’re trying to get vaccines to.”

Negley, echoing Flick’s thanks to the community partners for their time and resources, shared his take-aways for PCPH and the event.

“We wanted to know how many staff we needed to have a clinic of this size, does our flow get people in and out so we can handle a surge of people,” he said. “All of these things are things we’re looking at as part of this process. We’ll put it in our analysis and after action report as we plan for the COVID-19 vaccination.”

email scollins@circlevilleherald.com follow on twitter @Collins_Herald

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