Washington County, Tenn. officials work through COVID booster shot survey results

Local Coronavirus Coverage

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) – The results are in.

Officials in Washington County, Tennessee closed a survey last Thursday asking residents questions pertaining to the COVID-19 booster or third dose.

“We need to be prepared again in October, November, December, and January, just like we were last winter to get people through in a hurry, to not make them wait a long time, and to make it a very efficient flow for folks,” Washington County Mayor Joe Grandy said.

The survey consisted of three questions:

  1. Do you plan on getting a third or booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine?
  2. If you plan on getting a third or booster dose, where would you prefer to get it: in your car or inside?
  3. Which age group are you in?

Answering questions one and three were 2,371 participants, and 2,300 answered the second question.

The following lists the results of the survey:

Courtesy: Washington County, Tenn. Government

“97% of the people that responded, said they wanted to get the booster, which- that’s amazing,” said Grandy.

The overwhelming majority of the answers state that survey takers intend to get a third or booster dose. Most of those that say they plan to also would prefer to receive that dose in their cars or in a drive-thru.

Courtesy: Washington County, Tenn. Government

“That’s really very informative to us as far as trying to figure out what we’re going to do to revaccinate almost 45,000 doses,” Grandy said. “We’re working through locations, to try to find the best possible location.”

Courtesy: Washington County, Tenn. Government

Some of the first who would become eligible for the third dose would be first responders, teachers, health care workers and individuals over the age of 70, officials said.

Grandy explained that last year, the people fitting that description would line up at Freedom Hall for their first doses. Now, that locale may not be as ideal.

“We were in a little different situation for most of that time in that the children weren’t in school there,” he said. “We’d be limited to doing doses between about the hours of 9 and 1 o’clock, so it shortens the day a little bit, shortens the number of people we’d be able to get through.”

Another option could be mass vaccination events at East Tennessee State University, but again, Grandy said that would be a challenge due to students having returned to campus. The fairgrounds are another potential location, but planned events would limit the number of people who could get vaccinated.

“There are challenges out there finding a site that will accommodate the amount of traffic it’s going to take to dose 500 to 600 to 700 people a day,” Grandy added.

Grandy said his office is working with the county health department and emergency management agency to find the best location. Once they do, the doses for that mass vaccination site will be provided by the Washington County Health Department.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have approved the third dose or booster shot for those who are immunocompromised, but county officials believe it could become available to anyone eight months removed from their second dose of the vaccine.

It is yet unclear how those who received the one-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccine fall into the equation, as no federal guidance has been released.

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