Officials seek to bring a community vaccination center to Monroe

In an attempt to quicken the pace of vaccinations, President Joe Biden has set up a $20 billion national vaccination program. Included in the program is a plan to set up thousands of community vaccination centers across the country working with federal, state and local officials and Monroe Mayor John Howard is hoping that Monroe could be included in the program.

“It’s a federal program, and I am not too sure I expect a positive response. They seem to be intrigued that we have actually reached out. I have been working with Carl Morrow at Walton County Emergency Management, GEMA, and FEMA,” Howard said. “This program could bring some much-needed action into Monroe and it could probably put to use an unused, underserved piece of real estate. Maybe the old Black American Legion building?”

Howard said his plan would be to house the community center in the old American Legion building on Harris Street.

“There seems to be plenty of space, an underserved area, primarily people of color, and lower than average income,” Howard said.

According to CDC data, although caucasians lead the country in numbers in both cases and deaths, pro-rata people of color are more at risk.

Howard said that the federal government had originally targeted Newton County.

“But I am fairly certain we are one of the only counties in the state who have made the request,” he said.

In the meantime, the Walton County Health Department is now providing COVID-19 vaccines by appointment to health care workers, long-term care facility residents and staff, adults age 65 and older, and first responders.

COVID-19: vaccinations Photo by CDC on Unsplash

Appointments are required. To make an appointment, your can fill out a pre-registration form at this link. After you have submitted the pre-registration form, you will be contacted to make an appointment if you are eligible. Due to heavy demand, it may take several weeks before you receive a call back. You are asked to please answer your phone if you have submitted a pre-registration form as the call back could come from a non-local number. Priority for local appointments will be given to residents of Walton County. If you are unable to pre-register yourself on the website, you may call 706-340-0996 for assistance with the pre-registration process.

The vaccine supply is limited so appointments can only be scheduled based on the supply available. As a result, it could be several weeks before an appointment can be scheduled.

Additional COVID-19 vaccine providers can be found at this link:

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