‘It’s a relief’: Thousands line up for COVID-19 vaccine at VSU clinic

‘It’s a relief’: Thousands line up for COVID-19 vaccine at VSU clinic

ETTRICK, Va. (WWBT) - Thousands of people from Chesterfield, Colonial Heights and the Crater Health District waited in line outside Virginia State University’s Multi-Purpose Center in Ettrick to receive their COVID-19 vaccine.

The new mass vaccination clinic opened on Wednesday to welcome thousands of people that are pre-registered for the vaccine and have received appointments.

In the morning, the line was long, but moved quickly.

Residents, like Kevin Turner, said they waited less than an hour to get inside and get their shot. He said he’s been waiting for this moment for months.

“Ever since COVID started and they started vaccinating, I’ve been waiting for my turn to get there,” he said. “I’ve got kidney failure, so I’ve been waiting for it.”

In the afternoon, the line for vaccines stretched around the center and looped towards the sidewalk of the parking lot on Second Avenue.

A source inside the facility tells us they closed the facility to give their staff members a brief break and to talk about their operations before 2 p.m.

Shortly before 2:30 p.m., the line started moving again. People say this moment is met with hope.

“It’s a relief to be able to do it,” said Sue Blair, a resident of Midlothian who received her vaccine at the clinic. “It makes you feel like okay like it’s safer to go out. It’s safer to go into stores.”

Residents also said their vaccinations are one more step to move past the pandemic.

“I’m just so glad that we had the shot and I hope to be able to see my grandkids, which we haven’t seen in a while,” said Bernadine Dean, a Petersburg resident who received her shot.

“I feel good about it because I think everyone should get it,” said John Dean, another resident who went inside the clinic to get a shot.

On Tuesday, health and state officials said they hope to vaccinate 3,000 people a day at this new clinic with a goal of increasing this number to 6,000.

The center will be open Monday through Saturday for those that are pre-registered and received appointments.

This site is one of four new mass vaccination clinics opening around the Commonwealth to increase vaccine distribution.

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