Werner: Drive-thru clinic safe, convenientOctober 1, 2021
By CANDY NEAL
JASPER — Having a covered drive-thru outside of the Dubois County Health Department has been beneficial so far.
The drive-thru gives health department staff the option of dispensing vaccines outdoors. And that makes the process more safe, Administrative Director Shawn Werner said.
“It’s super convenient. You do not have to go into a building or possibly be exposed to other people. It also helps keep our staff members safe as well,” he said. “It’s just a quick, convenient way for people to get their vaccines while protecting themselves and protecting us.”
The department has used the drive-thru when dispensing flu and COVID vaccines since it opened at the beginning of the year. For instance, it was used for a Thursday morning flu clinic. Two other drive-thru flu clinics have also been planned: from 4 to 6 p.m. on Oct. 6 and 20.
COVID vaccinations can still be scheduled. “It’s available every day for COVID vaccines,” Werner said. “And then if somebody wants to use it for flu, we’re also, you know, making that available as well. It’s open every day from those time periods.” If for some reason there is a staffing issue, such as staff members who would be outside are at lunch, the person may be asked to come inside.
The drive-thru is available from 8:30 to 11 a.m. and from 1 to 3:30 p.m. So people can schedule a vaccine appointment and choose to use the drive-thru process.
To use the drive-thru service, drivers go to the health department’s parking lot just north of the building and drive to the west side of the facility to enter the drive-thru. “We do all the paperwork everything there, give them their shot and then they’re free to go,” Werner said. “They don’t even have to leave their car.”
The staff member goes to the person’s vehicle to find out what vaccine he or she is getting and relays that information to a clerk, who will get the person checked in. If the person has to fill out any paperwork, he or she will be given that to complete in the vehicle. The nurse comes to the vehicle to dispense the vaccine.
If the person is getting the COVID vaccine, the person is instructed to park along the side of the street and wait for 15 minutes to make sure there is no reaction. “If they have any issues within their 15 minute wait, they can notify us by honking their horn or getting our attention. And we will come take care of them,” Werner said. “If it’s a flu shot, they don’t have to wait there 15 minutes. They can drive away and proceed with their day.”
No appointment is needed for the Oct. 6 and 20 flu clinics. But the shot is for individuals who are 12 and older. High-dose and standard shots are available.
For COVID vaccines, people can schedule an appointment to get the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines at the health department through ourshot.in.gov.
For the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, call the health department at 812-481-7050 to set up an appointment.
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