RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond and Henrico Health District (RHHD) officials said during an afternoon update on Thursday that the Arthur Ashe mass vaccination site will shut down at the end of the month to make way for four smaller clinics across the district.
Officials said the closure is happening to increase COVID-19 vaccine accessibility and not due to lack of supply.
“Our goal is to be committed to having one opportunity in each quadrant of the north and south of the city and east and west in the county,” Amy Popovich, RHHD Nurse Manager, said. “Registration for these events will be a combination of registration like we’ve done at George Wythe, so some through VAMs, some through community partnerships and direct registration and then some through our community health workers and canvassers.
The four vaccination sites that will serve the community could rotate a bit, according to Popovich. However, as of right now these will be the locations for the vaccination clinics:
- Northside — TBD
- Southside — George Wythe High School on Crutchfield Street
- East End — Richmond Raceway on East Laburnum Avenue
- West End — Islamic Center on Impala Drive
Vaccinations at the Richmond Raceway and George Wythe High School are happening now. The Islamic Center in the West End will come on board by May, with the Northside location likely opening around the same time, according to RHHD’s Public Information Officer Cat Long.
Long said in the East End there are a few short-term community clinics happening.
St. James Baptist Church in Varina is currently administering vaccines. The Peter Paul Development Center on 22nd Street in Richmond is having an event this week and next week to vaccinate nearly 300 people. Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) also has a site at their health clinic located within the Market at 25th in Richmond.
Popovich said that over 50,000 people have been vaccinated at the Arthur Ashe Center. Although they’re transitioning out of the center at the end of the month, they are working to ensure that anyone who received their first vaccine at the center would receive their second one there as well.
At this time, 36.1% of Richmond and Henrico residents have been vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and one and five people have been fully vaccinated, Popovich added.
People who are eligible to be vaccinated under Phase 1 in the City of Richmond or Henrico County no longer have to wait for an email or phone call to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment.
Popovich said anyone who falls under Phase 1 can directly call RHHD’s call center to register Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at (804) 205-3501.
While vaccination efforts continue in Richmond and Henrico, health officials are asking the community to continue practicing social distancing and mask-wearing to keep everyone safe.