Elizabethton High School senior organizes “Vaccs by the Tracks” to boost Carter Co. vaccination rate

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ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – To combat the low rate of vaccination in Carter County, an Elizabethton High School student has paired with local health officials to lead a mobile vaccination event for the community.

Elijah Smith, a rising senior at EHS, is a member of the school’s swim team and lifetime student athlete. In a press statement to News Channel 11, Smith said his main goal for driving vaccinations is a return to normal life in the Fall.

“We just want to get back to normal, we want to play our sports, we want to be able to do our different events, that was the inspiration for this. We want to get back to normal and as quickly as possible,” said Smith. “So I brought up the idea to the Elizabethton Athletics Department and, honestly, they took it from there.”

Smith said while the initial idea came from himself, he has school and local health officials to thank for the ongoing process. The clinic is happening in partnership with Ballad Health, the Carter County Health Department, Region A.H.E.A.D. and Take a Shot on Life.

The EHS Swim team and Athletic Department will serve as hosts for the event, titled “Vaccs by the Tracks” due to the clinic’s location in the school parking lot next to the Tweetsie Trail.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, May 29 and will be free and open to the public. Children 12 and up will also be offered vaccines with parent permission. Appointments are available, though drive-through vaccination will also be open.

A total of 96 doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be available.

For more information on Take a Shot on Life’s mobile vaccination program, click here.

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