(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Despite a low and lagging vaccination rate in Buchanan County, Mosaic Life Care saw a rise in vaccinations at their COVID-19 clinic on Thursday.
More residents seem to have given the vaccine another shot as Mosaic Life Care reported Thursday's event vaccinated over 60% of the previous COVID-19 clinic's total turnout within the first two hours of operation.
“We’re very pleased. We’ve had a significant number of individuals show up. A large portion of those individuals are first dose,” said Michael Pulido, Mosaic Life Care's Chief Operations Officer.
From 7 a.m. - 9 a.m., 93 people were vaccinated inside the old Gordman's location at East Hills Shopping Center. 65 of those vaccinations were first doses.
At Mosaic's previous community clinic, only 140 people were vaccinated.
While the uptick in shots is a small victory for Mosaic, student nurses from Missouri Western State University volunteering at the clinic said the turnout is nowhere near where the numbers should be as the county's COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to spike.
“It’s a little sad to see, but I’m still glad that there are still people out there who do want to get vaccinated. It shows that there are still people who want to get vaccinated even a year and a half down the road,” said Kaitlyn Whaley, MWSU student nurse.
One of those who took the vaccine at Thursday's clinic was Otis, a 13-year-old attending Bode Middle School.
It was a decision his father Andy Burnham felt strongly about.
“With the recent increase, I just decided to go ahead and do it. I told him. There was no conversation. It was, ‘You are going to get vaccinated,’” said Andy Burnham, father to Otis.
While Otis felt indifferent about the COVID-19 vaccine, the teenager said he did it for his dad.
“I just agreed with it. I was like, ‘alright, I don’t mind getting it,’” said Otis.
The choice to get Otis vaccinated was one Dad felt was the right one in order to keep his son inside the classroom learning carefree this school year and with hopes of life returning back to normal.
“I want him to go to school, I want him to enjoy school and not have to be concerned about getting sick," said Burnham, "Let’s get on with our lives. I’m tired of walking on eggshells.”
At the end of the clinic, Mosaic officials said they vaccinated 344 people with 220 of them being first doses.