Wake County vaccine strike teams target specific neighborhoods

In Wake County, health officials are getting much more tactical about vaccinating as many people as possible against COVID-19.

Video Transcript

ANDREA BLANFORD: Wake County Public Health Department on Sunnybrook Road in Raleigh where, at the beginning of the vaccine rollout, you would see a line of people eager to get their shot wrapping around this building. But that's not happening anymore. So health officials are getting ready to walk out of this clinic and into the neighborhoods surrounding it.

- Before I realized, it was over.

ANDREA BLANFORD: Getting a COVID-19 vaccine has never been easier.

STACEY BYARD: We have Pfizer, we have J&J. We have Moderna. And we have more locations.

ANDREA BLANFORD: Supply is plentiful vaccine clinics, like this one Wake County just launched in Zebulon, are helping to fill in the gaps. But public health teams using this new mapping tool that layers census data with vaccination rates are zooming in beyond the zip codes and finding which communities are lagging behind. So you said you're going to be saturating this area.

STACEY BYARD: Yeah. We figured, well we're doing shots right there, why not hit a five mile radius?

ANDREA BLANFORD: Stacey Byard leads communications for Wakes vaccine team. She says beginning next month, you will see vaccinations strike teams on the ground within a five mile radius of two vaccine clinics in Raleigh. They will be in the neighborhoods, perhaps outside your grocery store.

STACEY BYARD: Having people at a booth with their vaccinate weak D shirts on saying, hey, did you know we're vaccinating down the street?

ANDREA BLANFORD: They'll have education materials ready to answer your questions or concerns, whatever your reason for not taking your spot.

STACEY BYARD: It could be hesitation. It could be access. I don't have a vehicle. I'm working. I have kids.

ANDREA BLANFORD: The county wants you to get your shot. As of last week, health officials say more than 67% of Wake County adults had at least one dose of a COVID vaccine.

- Awesome.

STACEY BYARD: We don't want our excitement to lead people to think we're done.

ANDREA BLANFORD: To reach areas that don't have a brick and mortar clinic nearby, the county is putting two clinics on wheels. These sprinter vans are in the shop right now getting outfitted as mobile vaccination sites.

STACEY BYARD: Get your shot. Right now, it's so easy. It's everywhere, and now we're going to bring it to you.

ANDREA BLANFORD: In Raleigh, Andrea Blanford, ABC11 Eyewitness News.