RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A day after the President and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) encouraged all adults to get their booster, Virginia saw a big spike in vaccinations at its nine state run clinics. There 9,193 COVID-19 vaccinations shots administered at the clinics on Nov. 30, up from 3,785 given on Nov. 28.
If you’ve been trying to get your booster you may have had the same experience as Richmond resident Doug Tyson.
He said, “We checked around to get appointments just to be sure and it was kind of like a few days out.”
8News did some checking and if you are trying to make a booster shot appointment online you are likely to get a message like that says, “no time slots are available.”
Fortunately, there’s several walk-in clinics in the area like the Arthur Ashe Athletic Center in Richmond.
“I didn’t wait any at all, I walked right up. It was pretty impressive,” Tyson said.
“Those walk-in clinics are a great option,” said Liz Thurman. She helped launch the Facebook page “RVA Vaccination Hunters” to help area residents get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Thurman said she’s seen fewer pharmacy appointments over the last few days.
“Some of the big-name pharmacies, the large retail chains that are exclusively pharmacies, those tend to be the first places that people think of when they think about making an appointment. So, they’re pretty backed up,” Thurman said.
Thurman said she found more availability at pharmacies associated with grocery stores or locally owned pharmacies.
To meet demand, the Richmond-Henrico Health District is offering three walk-in clinics this Saturday at Martin Luther King Junior Middle School, Fairfield Middle School and the Arthur Ashe Center. In Chesterfield, the Rockwood Vaccination Clinic also takes walk-ins as well as same-day appointments.
“I think the new variant has put a little fear in people as well as the fact that cases are rising,” said Thurman.
She also believes families wanting to protect themselves ahead of the holidays are prompting the spike in shots.
The Richmond-Henrico Health District will also hold some vaccination events at local schools next week. Those events are from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Mary Munford Elementary School on Tuesday, Boushall Middle School on Wednesday and Linwood Holton Elementary School on Thursday.