MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - New hours of operation and walk-ins are still being welcomed at the Pipkin Building, the site of FEMA’s mass COVID 19 vaccination site.
Day six at the vaccination site ran smooth, even with the new hours of operation. The site is now open from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Every day between the hours of 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. no appointment is necessary for anyone wanting to get their first or second dose of the vaccine at the Pipkin Building.
After announcing several changes last week FEMA spokesperson Darrell Habisch says Saturday was a busy day.
“Saturday was probably our best day out here so we’re thrilled. We got close to 3,000 vaccines,” said Habisch.
It’s unclear how many walk-ins showed up, but Habisch believes they saw close to 500 Saturday.
He also says they are still allowing walk-ins because they don’t want any barriers stopping people from getting a shot.
“We want it to be as easy as possible, that’s our job. Is to make this as easy as possible for everyone to come through,” said Habisch.
Starting Monday hours of operation changed due to more people taking advantage of earlier appointments.
“I did see that this morning at 7 a.m. interestingly and we had two long lines of cars,” said Habisch.
Habisch says it’s important people know that translation services are available for those who need them.
“Don’t let language barrier become a barrier to your health and it’s also true of your legal status, we don’t check your legal status,” he said.
When it comes to cases, for the last five days the Shelby County Health Department has reported more than 150 cases daily. With 196 new cases being reported Monday.
The health department says the last time they reported 200 or more new daily cases was Feb. 24 when we had 224.
In a statement from David Sweat, Deputy Director, Shelby County Health Department he said:
“The case numbers are trending upward because the UK variant strain is now the dominant strain of COVID-19 in Shelby County. The UK variant strain is 50% more transmissible and 30% more lethal than the original Wuhan virus strain. This is very concerning to the Health Department and the Joint Task Force.”
The health department recommends that everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated does that as soon as possible, and say all of the COVID-19 vaccines available in Shelby County provide protection against the UK strain.