Allegheny Health Network and the Pittsburgh Pirates teamed up for a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at PNC Park on Saturday morning. KDKA's Bryant Reed has the story from the North Shore.
- Now, demand remains high for the covid-19 vaccine. Thousands flocked to PNC Park today for Allegheny Health Network's second mass vaccination clinic. Bryant Reed tells us it's reminiscent of the polio vaccinations in the 1950s.
BRYANT REED: As smaller pharmacies are struggling to get their regular vaccine doses, AHN is vaccinating thousands of people at a time. One doctor says if it weren't for the slow roll-out, it could be thousands more. They line up and walk in by the dozens.
- You want to wait inside, where it's a little warmer?
BRYANT REED: 3,500 people going to, and coming from, PNC Park to get their first vaccine shot.
DIANA IGIMS: We've been trying for a couple months, but this one here, once we got the number to call, we were in. The luck of the draw, I guess.
- We're 84, and we thought we wanted it right away. But like I said, you couldn't get it right away, so this was fast for us.
BRYANT REED: It's a relief for many, as their hometown clinics have none to spare.
- Now I'm concerned when my wife can get the shot, when my daughter, and son-in-law, and kids can get their shots. There's a whole sequence that has to go through--
BRYANT REED: But the shortage is something even felt by mass providers like Allegheny Health Network.
IMRAN QADEER: We do have it, but there's still a limited number of vaccines available. We could do much larger events, 10,000, 15,000 in a day, so the vaccine is still in limited quantity.
BRYANT REED: This clinic, expanding to 1A group that can get a shot, and focusing on minority communities by zip code. And with many still worried about getting their second dose in a timely manner, AHN says this first dose will not affect any second dose patients. And they're already thinking about the next clinic.
IMRAN QADEER: So as we receive more and more vaccination, we will do larger and larger outreach to the community, and get as many people vaccinated as possible.
BRYANT REED: On Sunday, AHN is taking their services up I-79 to vaccinate 2000 more people in Erie. They've also launched a scheduling portal on their website to make it easier for folks to schedule, and get that first vaccine shot. And you don't have to be a part of their network.
Reporting at PNC Park, I'm Bryant Reed, KDKA News.