Advertisement

Vaccine hub fills remaining appointments after expanding eligibility

The plan is to give 5,000 first doses and 7,000 second doses this week.
COVID-19 Vaccine
COVID-19 Vaccine(ME Health)
Published: Mar. 22, 2021 at 2:16 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - The Brazos County Community Vaccination Hub has filled their appointment schedule for the week after temporarily expanding eligibility to all those over the age of 18 on Monday.

As of Monday afternoon, more than 1,500 appointment slots were set to be made available. Many users were directed at 5 p.m. to a waiting queue for the potential to register for a vaccine. Others reported 504 errors due to high traffic on the website.

Many people who registered on the BrazosHub website prior to 5 p.m. Monday reported receiving an email that said they had been added to a waitlist. Officials say there is no longer a waitlist in active use. Brazos County Vaccine Coordinator Jim Stewart says the waitlist was closed out a few weeks ago, though St. Joseph Health officials acknowledged the names of those who registered ahead of 5 p.m. Monday were collected on a waitlist that could be used in the future.

To receive a vaccine, you MUST register through the online portal. Walk-ups will not receive a vaccine.

Stewart says he believes the hub may continue to offer vaccines to the general public moving forward.

“That was one of our stated goals,” Stewart said. “The president has announced that by May 1, he wants it open to everyone and we had discussed probably as early as April and we’re not really that far from April so why defer it even a couple more weeks?”

Still, vaccine hub officials stressed by email that the decision had only been made for this week, due to the large number of appointments that were available. In a statement to KBTX, they said the hub would offer additional updates in the future as they monitor the demand for vaccines.

Stewart says he believes the older population and the most vulnerable have already received their vaccine.

“When we first started the hub, they were there in droves,” Stewart said. “Now we’re out of the older group or those with co-morbidities, I don’t know that the passion is quite the same to be vaccinated.”

Data indicates there’s still more work to do to get eligible residents vaccinated. Currently, Brazos County has 44,830 residents vaccinated with at least one dose, and 19,738 people are fully vaccinated. Estimates from the state of Texas say Brazos County has just under 75,000 residents age 16-64 who qualify under groups 1A or 1B.

State dashboard data doesn’t currently break out the number of people eligible under 1C, though the census estimates would suggest that number is about 23% of the county’s population, about 52,700 people. Nearly 16,000 of the county’s 21,693 residents over age 65 have been vaccinated with at least one dose.

This week, officials at the hub are planning to administer the most vaccines they’ve given in a single week. The plan is to give 5,000 first doses and 7,000 second doses. At the Brazos Center hub, they are only administering the Moderna vaccine for the foreseeable future.

The hub is continuing to encourage individuals in the community who are 50 years or older and still interested in receiving the vaccine to visit brazoshub.com and schedule an appointment as more become available. Appointments for the vaccine can be made at brazoshub.com when available. The number of appointments available each week will be dependent upon the allocation of vaccines to the Hub by the State of Texas.

Here is the full text of the news release issued Monday by the Hub:

As of Monday, March 22 at 12 p.m., the Brazos County Community Vaccination Hub still has a large number of appointments open for scheduling this week. More than 1,500 appointment slots are available. The Hub is encouraging individuals in the community who are 50 years or older and still interested in receiving the vaccine to visit brazoshub.com and schedule before 5 p.m. today.

At 5 p.m. today, the schedule will open for all community members 18 years and older interested in receiving the vaccine. The Hub continues to protect those at the greatest risk of hospitalization and death from COVID-19 in the Brazos Valley through their vaccination efforts. Recently the hub expanded vaccination criteria to people 50 plus years of age. This update aligned with the Department of State Health Services of Texas (DSHS) announcement on March 10.

As a reminder, all appointments are directly scheduled through the Vaccination Hub website, brazoshub.com. The Hub website posts available appointments each Friday at 10:00 am. As has been the past practice, the number of appointments available each week will be dependent upon the allocation of vaccines to the Hub by the State of Texas.

Remember…our mission is ‘getting a shot in everyone’s arm who wants one.

Copyright 2021 KBTX. All rights reserved.