OGDEN — With the number of people getting COVID-19 vaccinations tapering, officials in Weber and Davis counties are trying to make it easier for the public to get their shots, extending hours of operation and allowing walk-in appointments.
“It’s just our job as public health officials to get as many people vaccinated as possible,” said Trevor Warner, spokesperson for the Davis County Health Department.
Warner said the numbers of people getting their first vaccination dose “have dropped off pretty substantially.” The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses.
Lori Buttars, spokesperson for the Weber-Morgan Health Department, also noted a slowdown. “We’re not as busy as we were,” she said.
In Weber County, hours of operation at the main vaccination location, the Dee Events Center in Ogden, will be extended next Monday and Tuesday to 7:30 p.m. The clinic on the Weber State University campus has typically closed to the public between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.
What’s more, the public was allowed to get vaccination shots without an appointment at the Dee Events Center for the first time starting last Tuesday, and that policy will remain in effect. “We’re at a point where we have enough vaccine that we can have walk-ins,” Buttars said. Still, officials prefer that the public pre-register online ahead of time because it aids in planning.
The extended hours next Monday and Tuesday at the Dee Events Center are meant as a trial. Buttars said officials will decide after that whether to keep it up. Go to webermorganhealth.org for more information on getting vaccinated here.
In Davis County, hours at the main vaccination clinic there, at the Legacy Events Center in Farmington, will be extended on Thursdays and Fridays until 8 p.m. through May. The clinics have typically operated until 5 p.m. Likewise, walk-in appointments, those without a prior appointment, will be allowed. Go to daviscountyutah.gov/health/covid-19/vaccine for more details on getting vaccinated in Davis County.
“People are still encouraged to make appointments, but those who show up without an appointment will not be turned away,” reads a Davis County Health Department press release issued Friday. Utah residents may get vaccinated anywhere in the state, not just their county of residence.
Both the Weber-Morgan and Davis County health departments will also start offering outreach events, providing vaccinations to community groups, businesses and other organizations. Go to bit.ly/3u7EZ9x for details on the Weber-Morgan Health Department outreach effort. Go to daviscountyutah.gov/health/covid-19/vaccine for more information on the Davis County initiative.
“These outreach clinics will be important moving forward as we try to get as many people vaccinated as possible by removing barriers and making it easy, accessible and convenient for all residents,” the Davis County Health Department said.
The Davis County Health Department offered vaccinations at several Davis County high schools to reach students. The Weber-Morgan Health Department is also planning an outreach effort too, Buttars said, though details have to be finalized.
According to Warner, nearly 57% of those eligible to be vaccinated in Davis County, everyone 16 and up, has received at least one vaccination dose. Around 38% of those eligible have been fully vaccinated in the county. Davis County health officials are hoping to fully vaccinate 65%-70% of the eligible population, and Warner hopes those still waiting for their second dose push the numbers close to that threshold when they get their final shot.
In Weber and Morgan counties, officials are targeting vaccination of 60% of the eligible population. So far, around half the population has received at least one vaccination dose in the two counties, figuring from Utah Department of Health vaccination numbers and U.S. Census Bureau population estimates.
Looking forward, Warner broached the possibility of vaccinating those aged 12-15 ahead of the start of the 2021-2022 school year, though clinical trials are still underway in the age group. “I think that’s in the back of our minds,” he said.