Ohio pauses workplace COVID-19 vaccine clinics not open to public

Ohio’s vaccination rollout is moving toward outlining how private clinics can give COVID-19 shots at workplaces, churches and schools. But for now, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s administration has told health care providers to stop scheduling clinics that aren’t open to the public.

Posted: Apr 1, 2021 10:09 AM

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — Ohio’s vaccination rollout is moving toward outlining how private clinics can give COVID-19 shots at workplaces, churches and schools.

But for now, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s administration has told health care providers to stop scheduling clinics that aren’t open to the public.


FOX 55: Tracking the COVID-19 Vaccine

A handful of such clinics have popped up in recent weeks at offices, union halls and factories in the Toledo area for employees and their families.

Organizers say they’ve given shots to thousands of people, many who didn’t want to take time off work or were reluctant to be vaccinated.

“Those barriers were taken away,” said Matt Sapara, vice president of regional development and operations at Mercy Health in Toledo.

The clinics also can be more effective at reaching people of color, he said.

At a private event for Jeep workers and their families in Toledo two weeks ago, about 20% of those vaccinated were from ethnic minority groups — a much higher percentage than they’ve seen at the public vaccination sites, Sapara said.

State officials told providers, including Mercy Health, late last week to take a temporary pause with the nonpublic clinics because it first wants to make sure that there are enough doses for everyone, especially now that everyone ages 16 and older became eligible this week, said DeWine spokesperson Dan Tierney.

“The concern is that these types of closed pods would take away from public access,” he said. “It’s not that they aren’t a valuable tool. This should not be taken as any discouragement of the enthusiasm to get everyone vaccinated.”

State officials, he said, are working on guidelines that could be released in the coming week and spell out how the nonpublic vaccination clinics could operate.

These clinics that bring shots to where people work and live will be a part of the state’s strategy, Tierney said.

Health providers in Toledo who are complying with the state’s request to hit pause say there are dozens of employers, schools and organizations interested in holding events.

“The closer we can get the vaccine to people, the better,” said Sean Savage, who leads a communitywide effort in Toledo to promote and organize the vaccine distribution. ”That might be in an underserved community or an office setting or next to the assembly line.”

Some people, he said, aren’t able to leave work or drive to a large vaccination site. Others aren’t comfortable going to somewhere unfamiliar so the next phase needs to include giving out shots at places such as neighborhood schools, libraries and churches.

“This is critical,” Savage said. “We need to be really creative to reach those who weren’t first to have their hands up.”

His organization, called the V Project, sent DeWine a letter last week asking the governor to consider allowing vaccine providers to choose distribution sites that are close to where people live and work.

“The more convenient the sites, the more likely we achieve herd immunity,” the letter said.

Baldemar Velasquez, a farm labor organization leader in Toledo with deep ties to the Latino community, said the small, public vaccination clinic his group operates one night a week has reached those who would otherwise be left behind.

The clinic inside a bilingual school “is a safe place to come,” he said. “They feel it’s a trusted site.”

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1000163

Reported Deaths: 16309
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1347632106
Lake660041156
Allen57441793
Hamilton46100461
St. Joseph44109607
Elkhart35696507
Vanderburgh32087477
Tippecanoe27796257
Johnson24902443
Hendricks23738354
Porter22802362
Madison18614404
Clark18424250
Vigo17347301
Monroe15180197
LaPorte15046250
Delaware14984259
Howard14626287
Kosciusko12217147
Hancock11630175
Bartholomew11505179
Warrick11255189
Floyd11013214
Wayne10897250
Grant9964218
Morgan9404176
Boone8863116
Dubois8227130
Dearborn817093
Henry8139151
Noble7984106
Marshall7838134
Cass7499119
Lawrence7403170
Shelby7138114
Jackson694088
Gibson6533113
Harrison644491
Huntington633999
Knox6273106
DeKalb626397
Montgomery6208109
Miami589797
Putnam575377
Clinton570271
Whitley560455
Steuben554675
Wabash5279101
Jasper524475
Jefferson506996
Ripley495685
Adams476073
Daviess4616113
Scott435869
Greene422096
Wells420987
Clay420260
White415962
Decatur4133101
Fayette404286
Jennings385160
Posey375343
LaGrange353978
Washington353249
Randolph341999
Spencer337342
Fountain332558
Sullivan326752
Starke313369
Owen312070
Fulton306567
Orange291762
Jay280445
Perry264752
Franklin264042
Carroll259132
Rush258832
Vermillion255454
Parke230026
Pike227943
Tipton226659
Blackford190540
Pulaski181855
Crawford158623
Newton156048
Benton150217
Brown144547
Martin137419
Switzerland134211
Warren120516
Union106815
Ohio84112
Unassigned0538

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1499485

Reported Deaths: 23327
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1626291662
Cuyahoga1447662412
Hamilton1044761409
Montgomery731681240
Summit610421094
Lucas55643904
Butler51076707
Stark459431053
Lorain35141568
Warren32476369
Mahoning30315672
Clermont27930321
Lake26669434
Delaware23960162
Licking23547283
Trumbull22550552
Fairfield22179241
Greene22098311
Medina21763305
Clark19630349
Richland18342280
Portage17696247
Wood17244220
Allen15730269
Miami15355296
Muskingum14551174
Columbiana13756263
Wayne13585263
Tuscarawas12479298
Marion11797175
Scioto11388154
Pickaway11286141
Erie10676180
Ross10462196
Lawrence9663137
Hancock9546149
Ashtabula9479197
Belmont9133197
Geauga8829157
Jefferson8481191
Huron8229139
Union810756
Washington8031137
Sandusky7724145
Athens769572
Knox7606138
Darke7553151
Seneca7208144
Ashland6817125
Auglaize667896
Shelby6410111
Brown628582
Crawford6184130
Defiance6087102
Mercer608293
Fulton592996
Highland590099
Madison587576
Clinton576190
Logan574692
Guernsey572467
Preble5660121
Putnam5250108
Williams520184
Perry512561
Champaign505071
Jackson498770
Ottawa479086
Coshocton471582
Morrow451256
Pike430762
Fayette422160
Adams411587
Gallia411265
Hardin411076
Van Wert364078
Henry357871
Holmes3567122
Hocking352578
Wyandot317961
Carroll297059
Paulding275945
Meigs259249
Monroe212953
Noble196546
Morgan190832
Harrison178242
Vinton162624
Unassigned05
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The wonderful weather continues across the region Tuesday with our next chance of rain midweek.
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