Vaccination incentive program ends today

·6 min read

Aug. 31—Find a Vaccine

Finding a Vaccine is easy. Locate a vaccine nearest you by visiting vaccines.gov

Sampson County COVID-19 Vaccine Locations:

—SampsonRMC Vaccine Clinic — 522 Beaman St., Clinton

Walk-in clinic, no appointment needed

Hours: Every Tuesday 11:30 a.m. — 1 p.m. (Moderna age 18+) — Every Thursday 2-4 p.m. (Pfizer age 12+)

—Walmart — 1415 Sunset Ave., Clinton

Appointment required, call 910-592-1208

—Goshen Medical Center — 906 U.S. 421, Clinton

Appointment required, call 910-592-1462

—Clinton Drug Company — 307 Beaman St, Clinton

Appointment required, call 910-592-8444

—CVS Pharmacy — 507 College St., Clinton

Walk in or call 910-592-1538

—Walgreens Co. — 601 College St., Clinton — 218 E Dr. MLK Jr. Blvd., Roseboro

Walk in or call 910-592-4058 (Clinton) or 910-525-5100 (Roseboro)

—Sampson County Health Department — 360 County Complex Road, Clinton

Walk in and appointments available every Monday and Friday. For more information, call 91-490-1056 or 910-592-1131.

—CommWell Health of Salemburg — 500 S. Fayetteville St, Salemburg

Appointments required, call 1-877 WELL ALL (1-877-935-5255)

North Carolina's $100 Summer Card program will end today, Aug. 31.

As part of its ongoing effort to get more North Carolinians vaccinated and safely bring summer back, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has been offering $100 Summer Cards at select locations in various counties across the state. Cards were distributed to offset the time and transportation costs of getting vaccinated.

Through Aug. 31, anyone 18 and older who gets their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will receive a $100 card after vaccination. Those who drive others will receive a $25 Summer Card each time they drive someone to an appointment at the completion of the vaccination.

Previously the Summer Card program provided $25 cards. Since increasing the amount from $25 to $100 on Aug. 4, several vaccine providers saw a noticeable increase in demand, and many ran out of their card allotments in a single day. Providers also saw increases of up to 98% in the number of Summer Card recipients compared to the prior week.

NCDHHS has been committed to supporting North Carolinians to get vaccinated. The introduction of the $100 Summer Card and the Summer Cash Drawings sought to increase vaccinations throughout the state. While this program will sunset on Aug. 31, NCDHHS will continue to implement new strategies to help people get vaccinated.

"As the more contagious Delta variant of the virus is spreading across North Carolina, people should get vaccinated now to protect themselves and their communities," said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy. K Cohen, M.D. "With record numbers of people needing ICU care, do not wait to vaccinate."

Rigorous clinical trials have proven the vaccines are safe and effective with more than 172 million people in the U.S. fully vaccinated.

Sampson County saw 325 new COVID positives last week, just slightly down from the 333 new ones the previous week. The Sampson County Health Department has scheduled two vaccination clinics for the coming weeks, even as state health officials released statistics spanning the past month showing that unvaccinated people were 15 times more likely to die of the virus.

Sampson did see an additional death attributed to COVID this past week, its first in roughly two months, bringing the death toll to 116. (See related graphic for full breakdown)

The Sampson County Health Department will host vaccination clinics on the next two Wednesdays, Sept. 1 and 8, at the Sampson County Agri-Expositon Center, located at 414 Warsaw Road, Clinton.

Clinics will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. No appointments are needed.

The NCDHHS last week released new data in the weekly respiratory surveillance report showing that unvaccinated people were 15.4 times, or 1,540%, more likely to die from COVID-19 during the four-week period ending Aug. 21, 2021.

This comes as the state hit a pandemic high on Aug. 26 with 912 adults in the ICU with COVID-19. The number of COVID-19 patients on ventilators also reached a record high at 574.

During the week ending Aug. 21, 2021, unvaccinated people were also 4.4 times, or 440%, more likely to catch COVID-19 than vaccinated people. The difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated teens was even greater during the week ending Aug. 21, 2021, with unvaccinated people aged 12 to 17 being 6.3 times, or 630%, more likely to get COVID-19 than vaccinated people in the same age group.

"There is urgency to get vaccinated now," a NCDHHS release stated. "North Carolina has been experiencing the fastest acceleration in cases and hospitalizations since the pandemic started."

There were 29 deaths among unvaccinated persons younger than 65, compared with one death among vaccinated persons younger than 65 during the four-week time period. There were 30 deaths among unvaccinated persons older than 65, compared with seven deaths among vaccinated persons older than 65.

More than 10 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in North Carolina. While nearly half the state is fully vaccinated, in Sampson those numbers are at 39%, according to the NCDHHS, However, the CDC's Transmission Map shows the eligible population that is fully vaccinated at 44.6% in Sampson.

Although vaccination provides highly effective protection against hospitalizations and severe illness, hospital officials are seeing a decrease in vaccine effectiveness against mild to moderate infection — people getting sick but not severely ill and needing hospitalization.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced that planning is underway to support booster shots for the general population. Boosters will likely be available beginning the end of September, pending full review and recommendations by the FDA and CDC. People who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines will likely be eligible, starting 8 months after their second dose. Research is still underway regarding boosters for Johnson & Johnson.

Additional doses of Moderna/Pfizer vaccines for Immunocompromised people and Boosters will not be offered by Sampson County Health Department until mid- to late-September. More information will be posted at www.sampsonnc.com when available.

Vaccines are widely available in North Carolina, and incentives are being offered across the state to those who get their shot, and in many cases for those who help drive them.

To get a free vaccine near you, visit MySpot.nc.gov or call 888-675-4567. You can also text your zip code to 438829 to find vaccine locations near you.

To find a testing site in your community, go to www.ncdhhs.gov/GetTested.

In addition to getting vaccinated, to help slow the spread of COVID-19, NCDHHS recommends everyone wear a mask in indoor public spaces if you live in area of high or substantial levels of transmission as defined by the CDC until more people are vaccinated and viral transmission decreases. In North Carolina, that is now all 100 counties.

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