Yakima vaccination center thanks federal workers for completing their mission

Yakima vaccination center thanks federal workers for completing their mission
Image courtesy of the Yakima Health District

YAKIMA, Wash. — The Yakima County Community Vaccination Center (CVC) isn’t going anywhere. While many of the state’s mass vaccination sites are closing at the end of May, Yakima County assumed control of the site from federal officials on Tuesday. Before those workers leave, the county is recognizing government partners for their impact on the community in this time of need.

According to a release issued by the Yakima Health District (YHD), federal partners announced the completion of their eight-week mission at a ceremony at the site. Representatives of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Services were honored for successfully administering more than 40,000 COVID-19 vaccinations to Yakima community members.

Efforts to provide mobile vaccination units and public access to the CVC required more than 20 federal, state, local, and private sector organizations. The ceremony celebrated the 300 individuals who have worked diligently to make this vaccination site possible.

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As Yakima County’s Local Emergency Response Coordinator and Incident Commander for the COVID-19 Response, Nathan Johnson has witnessed the impact of their efforts firsthand.

“Equity has been the key to a successful immunization campaign that will get our communities back to normal,” Johnson said. “We want to thank our local, state, and federal partners who assisted in creating a trusting environment that encouraged our residents to get vaccinated.”

Nearly 10 percent of the county population was vaccinated as part of these joint endeavors. Vaccination efforts were improved efficiently and in an equitable manner, ensuring that anyone in the community could have access to vaccines to protect themselves and their families.

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FEMA Region 10 Acting Administrator Vince J. Maykovich saw the CVC efforts as an example of how unity can help people to overcome great hardships like the pandemic.

“This partnership demonstrates what can happen when all levels of government work together to defeat a deadly pandemic,” Maykovich said. “By providing tens of thousands of shots, we are helping to safely reopen our schools and businesses.”

Chris D. Utzinger, Response Section Manager Operations Unit for the Emergency Management Division, ensured that vaccination efforts in Yakima County won’t end here.

“As our Department of Defense partners are demobilizing, the mass vaccination effort in Washington and specifically at this location in Yakima continues locally-led and state coordinated, until we reach the Governor’s and the Department of Health’s immunization goals for the state,” Utzinger said.

For more information on how to get vaccinated in Yakima County, click here.

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