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1,500 People Get The COVID-19 Vaccine At Woodbury County Mass Clinic

Katie Peikes
About 1,500 people in Woodbury County received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a mass clinic in Sioux City Wednesday. Siouxland District Health Department has held a handful of such clinics at the Tyson Events Center in part to reduce any vaccine doses that could go to waste.

About 1,500 people received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday at a mass vaccination clinic in downtown Sioux City.

The clinic held by Siouxland District Health Department at the Tyson Events Center was for people in Woodbury County age 65 and older, school staff, public safety officers and others in Phase 1A and Phase 1B Tier 1 currently eligible for the vaccine. People who had appointments filed into the Tyson, checked in and filled out paperwork, then they made their way into the Tyson’s arena for their shot.

Gloria Anderson, 65, got her vaccine. She said she’s a little uneasy about possible side effects from it, “but I think that getting it is better than the risk of not getting it,” Anderson said.

Siouxland District Health has held four of these clinics at the Tyson so far, where it has offered at least 1,000 appointments per clinic to get the vaccine. Tyler Brock, the deputy director of Siouxland District Health, said the health department has been holding near-weekly large-scale vaccine clinics in part to help reduce any number of doses that could go to waste.

“We'll probably change tactics as we move along a little bit,” Brock said. “But all of our medical providers along with the health department really felt like this was the most efficient way to get large amounts of doses out to the most people.”

Vaccine demand is still high, Brock said, but a mass clinic like this can help meet that demand “a little bit.”

“We know it’s not enough,” Brock said. “We know there’s more people out there still that want vaccine and haven’t been able to get it. But we also are starting to see more and more people actually cancel their appointments because they’re getting vaccine somewhere else.”

When the health department opened up its phone bank last week for this clinic, it received nearly 7,000 calls from people trying to make appointments for 1,500 slots.

University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics has also been holding large scale COVID-19 vaccination events. It gave approximately 2,000 people their shot on Wednesday.

Katie Peikes is IPR's agriculture reporter