A COVID-19 Type 2 Community Vaccination Center, capable of administering 3,000 doses a day, will be opening April 21 at Tulsa Community College’s Northeast Campus, 3727 E. Apache St., federal officials announced last week during a live-streamed weekly press briefing by Biden administration health officials.
The center is part of a White House push to reach underserved populations, said Jeff Zients, the administration’s COVID-19 response coordinator.
The decision to place a community vaccination center in north Tulsa was based, in large part, on its social vulnerability index scale that takes into account factors including socioeconomic status, household composition, minority status, languages, housing type and transportation.
A White House press release indicated only 7% of those living in the same ZIP Code as TCC’s Northeast Campus — 74115 — has been vaccinated, and that adjoining and nearby areas also have high infection and low vaccination rates.
The new center will be operated in partnership with the state, with the Federal Emergency Management Agency assuming an important role.
“Oklahomans welcome this additional support from the federal government to further fuel our state’s successful vaccination rollout,” said Gov. Kevin Stitt. “We are well on our way to getting our summer back.”
“We are grateful to receive additional resources in Tulsa to reach as many people as possible during one of the largest vaccination rollouts in our country’s history,” said Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum. “I want to thank our federal partners for selecting Tulsa for this opportunity and want to thank the State of Oklahoma for their continued distribution of the vaccine as we all do our part to protect our neighbors.”
All Oklahomans 16 and older will be eligible for vaccination at the facility, although a parent or legal guardian must be present for those under 18. Appointments through the Oklahoma Vaccine Portal at vaccinate.ok.gov are encouraged, but some walk-in appointments will be available.
“As we continue to administer the COVID-19 vaccine in our community, it’s important to ensure equitable access for those who have been disproportionately affected by the virus,” said Tulsa County Health Department Executive Director Bruce Dart. “The addition of a temporary community vaccination center located in north Tulsa will increase opportunities for residents to receive the vaccine. I am grateful to the local, state and federal agencies who are collaborating to bring this center to fruition.”
More than 8,000 Oklahomans have died from COVID-19, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health, and more than 440,000 have contracted the virus.
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