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Mass Vaccination Sites Ramp Up Efforts As WA Prepares For More

Patch logo Patch 3/2/2021 Charles Woodman
a person taking a selfie in a car: JoAnn Lewis receives a COVID-19 vaccination on January 26 at Town Toyota Center in Wenatchee, one of the states four mass vaccination sites. © David Ryder/Getty Images JoAnn Lewis receives a COVID-19 vaccination on January 26 at Town Toyota Center in Wenatchee, one of the states four mass vaccination sites.

OLYMPIA, WA — The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) is celebrating the 70,000th shot administered at their mass vaccination sites, and looking forward to more vaccinations as they prepare to receive larger vaccine shipments over the coming weeks and months.

As of the DOH's latest update Saturday, the four state-run mass vaccination sites have administered more than 70,774 doses of COVID-19 vaccines, including:

  • 16,196 in Spokane
  • 18,114 in Ridgefield
  • 17,541 in Wenatchee
  • 18,923 in Kennewick

Those totals include a mix of first and second doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. This week, the DOH says the sites will be prioritizing patients receiving their second dose, where possible.

Another tool in the DOH's belt: the introduction of a new coronavirus vaccination site at Lumen Field Events Center (formerly CenturyLink Events Center) in Seattle. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan says the site will administer 500 vaccines a week for the first few weeks, but should eventually be able to perform 21,000 vaccinations daily when in full swing.

Those efforts and efforts of health care providers across the state will see a significant boost as vaccine allotments for Washington will be increasing over the next few weeks. The state is expected to receive a total of 285,200 doses by the end of this week, and 313,280 the week after — and those totals don't include the recently-approved Johnson and Johnson vaccine, which will also be added to the state's supply.

Saturday, the FDA gave the go-ahead for the J&J vaccine. It requires just one shot, but provides only 85 percent protection against moderate to severe cases, compared to 95 percent protection from both two-dose vaccines. The DOH says Washington will be allocated 60,900 doses of the J&J vaccine this week, with more to come in the following weeks.

State health leaders say they hope those additional doses will help Washington draw closer to meeting its vaccination goals. The state previously set a target of administering 45,000 vaccine doses per day. They're closer now than ever before — the latest update to the DOH vaccination dashboard shows an average of 37,481 daily vaccinations the week ending Saturday - but the increased vaccine allotments could push them over the edge.

As of the latest update to the state's COVID-19 data dashboard, Washington has received 1,917,810 vaccines. Of those, 1,676,787 have been administered, meaning providers have used 79.97 percent of the delivered doses thus far.

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