NORFOLK, Va.— The flood gates are open for anyone age 16 and older who wants a vaccine to get one.
Norfolk Health Department says it will now offer some same-day vaccinations for anyone in Phase 2 in Hampton Roads who wants a shot.
Starting Tuesday, the FEMA-lead vaccination site at Military Circle Mall will begin walk-up registrations for anyone 16 and older in Hampton Roads to get a vaccine appointment.
Norfolk Health Department says they will work to schedule people the same day or next day if doses are available.
“After 2 o’clock there will be a walk-up registration, so if you come to the entrance of the clinic, we’ll get you registered that way,” said Chief Operations Officer Paul Brumund. “And if there’s a vaccine available when you register, perhaps you can get a vaccine, otherwise we’ll make an appointment for the next available slot.”
The FEMA-lead site is working to vaccinate 3,000 people a day, 7 days a week.
The goal is to help more people who’ve had trouble accessing the preregistration system online at vaccinate.virginia.gov or by phone at 1-877-VAX-IN-VA.
Virginia Beach now joins Chesapeake and Norfolk to vaccinate all residents 16 and older in Phase 2— two weeks ahead of Governor Ralph Northam’s April 18 deadline.
“We took a hard look at the number vaccination we’ve given today which is just under 100,000 and how many people were still in the 1B, 1A, 1C list and we pretty much depleted that,” said Virginia Beach EMS Chief Ed Brazle.
Virginia Beach says people that sign up right now could expect to be vaccinated within a week.
“Our message is, no matter where you think you are in terms of your job or priority, sign up in the pre-registration portal — we’re ready to get shots in arms in everybody,” said Brazle.
Portsmouth, Hampton, Newport News and Suffolk remains in Phase 1C; however, Norfolk still trails all Hampton Roads cities in the number of people per 100,000 who have at least one dose of the vaccine.
Priority will still be given to individuals identified to be high risk for COVID-19.
“Those in the 1A and 1B and 1C category, they will be prioritized as they are identified in the phase 2 will fill in behind them,” said Brumund.
Over 67,000 people are fully vaccinated in Virginia Beach, but the city has a population of around 450,000.
“Phase 2 is going to last a while. We have tens-of-thousands of people that need to be vaccinated still, and we're projecting maintaining this pace at least until the summertime, maybe beyond,” said Brazle
That’s why they’re encouraging everyone to get vaccinated as fast as they can wherever they can, whether that’s through the city or with a local pharmacy.