Knox County Health Department to close mass COVID-19 vaccination site amid dwindling demand

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – The Knox County Health Department will end operations at its off-site COVID-19 vaccination clinic and begin administering inoculations at its main location.

Effective June 28, KCHD vaccinations will be administered at its main location, 140 Dameron Avenue. The health department will shutter its mass vaccination site, located a former Food City on Broadway in North Knoxville, after vaccination rates dropped to a level which could be accommodated at the main location.

“This is an important and exciting time in the COVID-19 response as the local situation continues to improve,” said KCHD Clinical Services Director Dena Mashburn. “Incorporating COVID-19 vaccine into our standard clinical operations not only represents a new phase in the response, it also characterizes the long-term direction of how communities will integrate COVID-19 into the standard health care delivery system, especially as we advance toward the recovery phase.”  

Community members interested in receiving the free vaccine may make appointments by calling the Travel and Immunizations Clinic 865-215-5070 or the COVID-19 Phonebank 865-215-5555. KCHD will still accept walk-ins on Mondays and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at its main location.  

“While we wish we could achieve higher vaccination rates quicker, the slowing demand is not unexpected,” added Mashburn. “My hope is that as more providers incorporate COVID-19 vaccination into their standard operating procedures, more will continue to get vaccinated. This would represent albeit slower but steady progress nonetheless.”  

KCHD has developed mobile teams who will hold special vaccination clinics in the community. The teams will target areas and populations with less access and greater need.

The health department recently brought a vaccine clinic directly to homebound seniors with the help of American Medical Response and local firefighters.

KCHD continues to recommend all those 12 and over receive a COVID-19 vaccine, which is widely available in the community. Click here for more information on the coronavirus vaccine.

According to data released June 14, 46.3%, of Knox County residents have started the two-dose series of the vaccine and 41.55% are fully vaccinated. Those numbers are higher than the state. The Tennessee Department of Health says 40.3% have received at least one dose and just 35% are fully vaccinated statewide as of June 13.

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