NORWOOD, Ohio — Hamilton County Public Health is moving its COVID-19 vaccine clinic to the Hamilton County Board of Elections Early Vote Center on Friday.
During Wednesday’s briefing, Hamilton County Commissioner Denise Driehaus said the county had already leased extra space to allow for early voting amid the pandemic, so officials are now using the space to accommodate vaccine distribution.
Director of Elections Sherry Poland said she and her team are happy to help provide a convenient site for the vaccine. The space, which has more than 15,000 square feet, has 100 parking spaces and is accessible by a number of bus routes. About 80,000 residents voted early at the center, so a number of people will be familiar with the location, Poland said.
Hamilton County Public Health Commissioner Greg Kesterman said health officials are vaccinating 500 people in Forest Park Wednesday and Thursday. The agency is receiving 200 additional doses, which will be distributed at the BOE Early Vote Center on Friday. Kesterman said the sheer space the center offers is ideal for vaccine distribution.
“The space also allows us to efficiently administer vaccines, with ample room to move people through, while providing enough space for people to remain following their vaccine to check for vaccine tolerance," Kesterman said.
Despite having a center large enough to accommodate eligible residents, Driehaus reiterated that the county is not receiving enough vaccines.
“Just because you’re eligible, unfortunately does not mean you’re going to receive a dose of vaccine in Hamilton County because we’re not getting enough doses to allow for these populations to be vaccinated, even though they’re eligible,” Driehaus said.
Hamilton County Public Health receives about 500 doses of the vaccine from the state per week; that’s on par with other counties in Ohio, Kesterman said. The county as a whole received 8,100 doses this week and is expected to get 10,500 doses next week, Kesterman said.
Ohioans 80 and over can sign up to receive a vaccine, and Hamilton County Public Health will contact those eligible for the vaccine to schedule an appointment. People 75 years old and older can start signing up next week.
Officials stressed that people should not show up at the facility without an appointment. The Board of Election’s Early Vote Center is located at 2300 Wall St. in Norwood.
You can visit Hamilton County Public Health’s website for more information. The county also has a common website to serve as a navigation tool. People who don’t have internet access can call 2-1-1 for help.