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Monday, October 18, 2021

City Of Seattle And Partners Launch High-Capacity Fixed Vaccination Hub

Downtown Seattle Vaccination Hub to Open October 23; City and Partners to Soon Launch Fixed Vaccination Hubs in South and West Seattle

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan recently announced the City of Seattle and partners’ initial fall and winter vaccination plans, which will ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccinations for remaining unvaccinated individuals, kids 5-11 once they become eligible, and individuals eligible for boosters. The City’s fall and winter vaccination plan will supplement existing public health, health care, and pharmacy capacity. Later in October, the City will launch a high-capacity Downtown Seattle Vaccination Hub at the Amazon Meeting Center, as well as one to two Seattle Fire Department (SFD) Mobile Vaccination Teams (MVT). These two efforts will be able to provide approximately 10,000 vaccinations per week, with the ability to surge capacity if needed.

The City of Seattle vaccination efforts will offer first, second, and booster doses, and will offer a combination of Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, and Pfizer. Proof of insurance and identification are not required; proof of vaccination is recommended for those receiving second or booster doses. All City efforts will offer vaccines for not fully vaccinated people and people eligible for Pfizer boosters, which were recently approved. Individuals eligible for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson boosters and kids ages 5-11 will also be able to receive Pfizer vaccinations through City efforts upon Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, and Washington State Department of Health approval.

“Seattle was the first region in the country to feel the devastating effects of the COVID-19 virus, and we innovated and brought nation-leading testing and vaccination sites to our residents. This fall and winter, we’re again launching citywide hubs and mobile teams to ensure Seattle kids, families, and workers have easy access to life-saving COVID-19 vaccines and boosters,” said Mayor Durkan. “As we head into flu season, getting fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is more important than ever. Our partners – Swedish, Amazon, Virginia Mason Franciscan Health, and our City employees – have come together to prioritize vaccine equity and helping to make this new high-capacity hub a reality.”

“Our teams and valued partners have been working hard in anticipation of authorization for boosters and for children age 5-11, and to serve those still seeking to get vaccinated. We are ready for the increased demand. These investments in a new fixed vaccine hub and additional mobile teams will ensure that life-saving vaccines reach Seattle and King County residents as quickly and as equitably as possible,” said Dennis Worsham, Interim Director, Public Health – Seattle & King County.

The City partnered with Amazon, Swedish, and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health to host a high-volume COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Amazon Meeting Center, located at 2031 7th Ave, Seattle, WA 98121. The Downtown Seattle Vaccination Hub will open Saturday, October 23, and will operate most Saturdays and Sundays, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Swedish and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health will both serve clinical providers and will offer first, second, and booster doses of the Pfizer vaccine. In-person interpretation in American Sign Language, Cantonese, Mandarin, Spanish, and Vietnamese will be available at this hub.

“Amazon is committed to doing what it can to ensure that our communities have access to COVID-19 vaccines, including providing space for a Downtown Seattle Vaccination Hub” said Katie Hughes, Amazon’s senior manager for global environmental, health and safety. “We are proud that our partnership with Virginia Mason Franciscan Health earlier this year resulted in 80,000 shots.”

“It is our honor to be reconnected with the City to continue vaccinating our community,” said Swedish Chief Quality Officer Renee Rassilyer-Bomers. “We had a lot of success at the Community Vaccination Site at Lumen Field, giving more than 100,000 vaccinations in just a few short months. We know the work isn’t done. We are here to serve our community and we urge everyone who hasn’t been vaccinated, who can get vaccinated, to take that important step to helping end the pandemic by getting your shot.”

“We are excited to participate in a partnership that will expand equitable access to the COVID-19 vaccine for our local community. The vaccine is our best tool to combat the ongoing pandemic and we strongly encourage those who are eligible to please get the vaccine, if they haven’t already, to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their community,” said Chris Baliga, MD, medical director of infection prevention and control for Virginia Mason Franciscan Health.

The SFD MVTs will resume operating in mid-October, and will initially focus on remaining unvaccinated people through partnerships with community-based organizations and small businesses. The MVTs will offer first, second, and booster doses of Pfizer, as well as Johnson & Johnson and Moderna. Future areas of focus for the MVTs include older adults facing mobility barriers as well as kids ages 5-11.

“The fire department looks forward to relaunching our Mobile Vaccination Team program in the fall to help provide vaccinations to those who are not yet vaccinated and to administer booster shots. By partnering with small businesses and community-based organizations, and travelling to where people naturally gather, our deployment model has proven to be a successful way for allowing more convenient access to the vaccine,” said Fire Chief Harold Scoggins.

The City is again partnering with Signetic for online registration and scheduling. Patients are not required to register for an appointment at any City hub, however, advance registration is recommended as it expedites patients’ on-site experience. Patients who already received a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination from the City and are eligible for a Pfizer booster will receive an automated notification from the City of Seattle and Signetic to sign up for a booster shot.

“We got into public health to help people, especially communities that have been historically overlooked by the existing health care system. Our ongoing partnership with the City enables mobile vaccination units, community pop-up sites, and larger operations, meaning we can continue to serve those most affected by Covid, while remaining available to anyone who wants to be vaccinated,” said Chandika Bhandari, CEO at Signetic. 

For more information, including how to get vaccinated today, visit the City’s vaccination website at www.seattle.gov/vaccine. The site contains vaccination information in seven languages, and in-language assistance is also available over the phone. In addition, the City’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) has partnered with a number of community-based organizations to make available in-language helplines. These phone numbers are for immigrant and refugee residents who are limited English proficient and/or have limited access to the internet to ask questions and/or find vaccination opportunities. More information on the OIRA Vaccine Community Helplines is available here.

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