Mass vaccination planned for Walla Walla County

WALLA WALLA, Wash. — The Walla Walla County Department of Health is joining forces with Providence St. Mary Medical Center to vaccinate eligible participants this weekend.

According to a press release sent on Thursday afternoon, Providence St. Mary received a reallocation of COVID-19 vaccine doses. They’re teaming up with county officials to vaccinate the community.

From 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, January 23, eligible citizens can visit the County Fairgrounds to receive a COVID-19 vaccination at no cost.

Individuals who fit the Washington state Department of Health’s description for Phase 1A and 1B vaccinations are encouraged to partake. Recently, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced that Phase 1B, which includes people age 65 and up plus those age 50 and older who live in a multi-generational household, are eligible to be vaccinated.

RELATED: Coronavirus was first reported in Washington a year ago today

By vaccinating multi-generational households and those age 65+, Washington health officials are protecting those most vulnerable to the virus.

Health officials are making it clear that vaccinations will be administered by appointment only. To participate in the event, one must follow these steps, which were provided by the WW County Unified Command email:

Step 1: Visit the Washington State Department of Health Phase Finder Tool.

Step 2: Complete the Phase Finder questions to verify eligibility. Even if you have completed the Phase Finder Tool before, please complete it again.

Step 3: After verifying eligibility, click link to vaccine locations. Scroll or search for “Walla Walla County” in the list of counties.

Step 4: Click “Walla Walla County”

Step 5: Schedule your vaccine appointment by clicking the “Providence – Walla Walla,” link.

Step 6: Scroll to the middle of the page and click “Click Here to Schedule Appointment”

RELATED: Rite Aid expands free COVID-19 testing nationwide

According to this release, the County Fairgrounds will be used as a mass vaccination site for months to come.

Dr. Daniel Kaminsky, the region’s Public Health Officer, played a pivotal role in organizing this event.

“Moving forward, we should have clinics occurring weekly,” Dr. Kaminsky said. “Keep in mind that these clinics are dependent upon whether we receive vaccine from the state. We ask for your patience at we continue to develop plans to administer vaccine.”

RELATED: Kennewick COVID-19 testing site to close indefinitely