Reacting to lower demand, Reid Health revises hours at Kuhlman Vaccine Clinic
May 17, 2021 -- Reid Health is adjusting the operating hours for its COVID-19 mass vaccination clinic as the health system reacts to a drop-off in scheduled appointments over the past several weeks.
From the beginning of the vaccine rollout in mid-December, Reid officials have worked to commit the level of resources needed to keep up with demand and get as many shots into arms as quickly as possible.
That demand peaked weeks ago and has seen a steady decline since, so Reid is shifting its plans for the Kuhlman Center Vaccine Clinic at the Wayne County Fairgrounds while remaining prepared should the need arise again for mass vaccinations.
"We want to rightsize our resource commitment to the current demand," said Thomas Huth, M.D., Vice President of Medical Affairs for Reid Health, "but we will be ready to increase our capacity again at a moment's notice."
Starting May 27, the Kuhlman Center location will be open Thursday mornings, Friday afternoons, and Saturday mornings instead of the current Monday-Saturday schedule for that location.
Reid will continue to distribute the vaccine at its Urgent Care facilities in Richmond and Connersville as well as at Reid Ready Care Clinic in the Richmond Meijer store.
"As much as we'd like for everyone to be vaccinated, we know that's not going to be a reality. But for those who remain on the fence about the shot, we're still here and we'd love to help you and your loved ones stay safe," said Craig Kinyon, Reid Health President/CEO.
Five months ago, Reid officials began administering the COVID-19 vaccine as part of a statewide program overseen by the Indiana Department of Health. On that Thursday night, four Reid doctors became the first people in Wayne County to receive the shot.
In the time that followed, vaccine demand increased as the IDOH gradually expanded eligibility guidelines, and Reid Health reacted accordingly.
Clinics at the Medical Office Building on the main hospital campus and at Reid practices in Lynn and Connersville were consolidated into a single larger location at the Kuhlman Center as the vaccine was offered to the general public for the first time in mid-January.
It took five weeks to reach the first 5,000 doses administered as state guidelines limited eligibility to frontline healthcare workers and first responders.
But the pace at which milestones were met accelerated once access was opened to the public. It took only 15 days to go from 5,000 to 10,000 doses given out and another 12 days to reach 15,000 as the age of eligibility steadily dropped to 65 and older.
As younger groups became eligible, a new trend took shape. With each announcement of another drop in the age requirement, the size of the surge in new appointments declined.
As first-shot appointments at the Kuhlman Center have decreased, Reid officials have tried other ways to make the vaccine more accessible. They opened a vaccine clinic in Franklin County and special clinics were stood up for staff and students at Indiana University East, Ivy Tech Community College Richmond, Earlham College, and Bethany Theological Seminary as well as for staff and patients at Richmond State Hospital.
Last month -- with the blessing of the IDOH -- Reid expanded to giving out vaccinations at the Richmond and Connersville Urgent Cares and the Ready Care clinic at Meijer and began welcoming walk-ins at all locations. The health system's leaders continue to look at options for branching out to other practices as well.
"We want to make it as easy as possible for everyone to get vaccinated," Huth said, "but storage requirements for the vaccine create challenges that we're actively working through."
Free vaccinations at the Richmond (1501 Chester Blvd.) and Connersville (1475 E. State Road 44) Urgent Cares are available from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Sunday. The Ready Care Clinic at Meijer is open for shots 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
The Kuhlman Center site will temporarily shut down starting Saturday, June 12 to make way for the Wayne County 4-H Fair. Operations at the site will resume after the Fourth of July holiday on Thursday, July 8. During this time, scheduled and walk-in vaccinations still will be available at Reid's other sites.
There is no office fee or copay for vaccination-only visits at any Reid locations.
"As much as we'd like for everyone to be vaccinated, we know that's not going to be a reality. But for those who remain on the fence about the shot, we're still here and we'd love to help you and your loved ones stay safe." -- Craig Kinyon, Reid Health President/CEO
Appointments can be scheduled through the state website, ourshot.in.gov, using either the Firefox or Chrome web browser. To make it easier for Hoosiers to get vaccinated, the IDOH recently began to have all sites accept walk-ins as well.
After an appointment has been made, a link will be sent to complete the registration. That information doesn't have to be filled out before arriving for the scheduled vaccination but doing so ahead of time will speed up the process.
The IDOH has designated 211 as a call line for assistance.
Everyone 12 and older is eligible to be vaccinated in Indiana, but only the Pfizer vaccine has been approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration for those younger than 18. Reid's sites use the Pfizer product.
Parents or legal guardians of minor children who will be vaccinated need to be present at the child's appointment.
Reid Health Vaccination Timeline
- Dec. 17: Wayne County's first vaccinations are given to four doctors at the Medical Office Building on the main Reid campus. The following week, Reid opens two other clinics, one in Lynn and one in Connersville.
- Jan. 19: Richmond operations move to the Kuhlman Center shortly after the first members of the general public (those 80 and older) become eligible for the vaccine. Operations in Lynn and Connersville begin to wind down with only second-shot appointments available. The 5,000th vaccine dose is given.
- Jan. 21: Clinic opens at Reid's Greenville, Ohio, facility as part of a partnership with the Darke County General Health District, Family Health, and Wayne HealthCare.
- Feb. 3: The 10,000th dose is given.
- Feb. 15: Vaccine operations are fully consolidated at the Kuhlman Center as the Lynn and Connersville clinics close. The 15,000th dose is given.
- March 2: The 20,000th dose is given.
- March 18: The 25,000th dose is given.
- March 30: Clinic at the American Legion facility in Brookville, Ind., opens for a six-week run with first shots given over the initial three weeks and second shots scheduled for the last three weeks.
- March 31: The 30,000th dose is given.
- April 8: Another expansion comes with special clinics stood up for IU East, Ivy Tech, Earlham, Bethany, and Richmond State Hospital.
- April 16: The 35,000th dose is given.
- April 19: Richmond and Connersville Urgent Cares begin administering shots.
- April 30: Walk-ins welcomed at the Kuhlman Center.
- May 3: Reid Ready Care in Meijer starts giving the vaccine.
- May 12: Reid partners with White's Farm Flea Market and Auctioneers for a special one-time clinic at the popular Brookville flea market. The 40,000th dose is given.
- May 27: Kuhlman Center Vaccine Clinic will move from a six-day-a-week schedule to being open three days, including Thursday mornings, Friday afternoons, and Saturday mornings.
- June 12-July 7: Operations at the Kuhlman Center will pause to make way for the Wayne County 4-H Fair.
- July 8: Vaccinations will resume at the Kuhlman Center.