ROCK HILL, S.C. (WBTV) - A community coronavirus vaccination clinic is now open in Rock Hill.
The clinic, led by Rock Hill in cooperation with SC DHEC and Piedmont Medical Center, is located at the Galleria Mall at 2295 Dave Lyle Blvd in Rock Hill. It’s in the space formerly occupied by Home South and Goody’s.
Operating hours will be Tuesdays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. by appointment only starting January 22. Click here sign up.
Gov. Henry McMaster visited the clinic on opening day, saying the state of South Carolina is “making progress” with vaccinations.
Corey Porter says he will be the first one in line with his sleeve already rolled up when it is his turn to get the vaccine.
”My mother has emphysema. I don’t get to see her at all anymore. My brother has underlying conditions,” says Porter.
Porter and his family are the exact people Rock Hill’s new vaccination clinic wants in the seats.
”Let’s work within the system we have, but let’s get as many people vaccinated as possible,” says Piedmont Medical Center CEO Mark Nosacka. “And that’s what’s going to happen here and we’re excited to be a part of it.”
Nosacka came to Rock Hill city leaders with a problem—not having enough hospital staff or space to vaccinate the community. Rock Hill Mayor John Gettys says it took eight days to open the solution.
”We’re gonna start putting shots in arms but what we’re really doing is going to start giving hope to our people,” says Gettys.
That hope has not reserved just for people with a Rock Hill address.
”The virus does not know any political boundaries. It doesn’t know what a county is,” says Gettys. “It doesn’t know what a city limit is. It just knows people. And we are in the business of helping people.”
Vaccinations are currently underway for those 70 years of age and older in South Carolina.
Appointments are required and will follow the guidelines for phased eligibility outlined by DHEC, with availability dependent upon the number of doses received each week from DHEC. Appointments for second doses will be made at the time the first shot is given.
The help might be slow at first. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s top doctor says doses are limited, but DHEC board member Rick Lee is confident the clinic’s success will speak for itself.
”If this is a success, you can rest assure I’ll be pounding on the table to get more vaccines so we can get more shots in arms,” says Lee.
It is an encouragement Porter’s been waiting to hear. ”It’s amazing considering everything everyone’s been through for the last year,” says Porter.
While they have 500 doses to start, Lee could not say if it would get that many in the next weeks. Keep that in mind when making an appointment.
Appointments will be filled weekly, through Piedmont Medical Center here, based on the number of vaccine doses available. When no additional appointments are available, patients will be told to check back online to schedule appointments as they become available.
Dozens of volunteers are needed daily to assist with a variety of tasks including registration, data entry, and answering phones to make appointments and answer questions. Medical professionals are also needed to administer shots and observe patients following their inoculation.
Volunteer shifts are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays.