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Reaching rural populations

WCHD holds outreach clinics for COVID-19 vaccines

-Submitted photo
Bryant Dutcher, of rural Dayton, left, receives his first dose of the Moderna vaccine Wednesday from Webster County Health Department nurse Shannon Housken. The outreach clinic was held in Dayton as well as Lehigh, Harcourt, and Gowrie Wednesday. Webster County Health Department will have clinics today in Badger, Barnum, Clare, and Vincent. Clinics on Friday will be held in Callender, Moorland, Otho and Duncombe. To register for a vaccine, call WCHD at 515-573-4107.

The Webster County Health Department has been busy in its effort to help more residents receive a COVID-19 vaccination.

On Wednesday, outreach clinics were held in Dayton, Lehigh, Harcourt and Gowrie to help accomplish that goal.

“It’s going really well,” said Kelli Bloomquist, public information officer for WCH.

She estimates that about 50 people called to make appointments for the three days of rural town clinics so far.

“We have a number of homebound individuals call and have a nurse come to provide the vaccine,” she said. “So our goal with the outreach clinics is to be able to reach anyone who may not have been able to get to a mass clinic or is homebound. We want to make sure everyone who wants a vaccination has an opportunity to get it.”

-Submitted photo
Scott Cramer, of Dayton, left, receives his first dose of Moderna vaccine from Webster County Health Department nurse Shannon Housken on Wednesday at an outreach clinic held at the Dayton Community Center.

Almost 22% of Webster County is considered fully vaccinated.

Over 26,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered in the county. That number includes all first and second doses.

Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 5,105 positive cases. The current 14-day average positivity rate is 2.6%.

Bloomquist said the best way through the pandemic is for as many to people to get vaccinated as possible.

“Vaccines are safe,” she said. “Vaccines have been used to successfully eradicate a number of viruses we have had in the past. People want to get back to normal and the fastest way to be able to do that is get vaccinated.”

Those who have been vaccinated don’t have to quarantine if they get exposed to COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“The CDC’s guidance is if you get exposed and you’re vaccinated, you don’t have to quarantine because you’ve been vaccinated,” Bloomquist said. “There’s been concern with people not wanting to miss school or work — this is the opportunity to get back to that normal, to get vaccinated so you wouldn’t have to quarantine.”

Bloomquist said WCHD is continuing to assess the needs for mass clinics in the area. Residents can also get vaccinated at Daniel Pharmacy, Hy-Vee and CVS in Fort Dodge.

WCHD will have clinics today in Badger, Barnum, Clare, and Vincent. Clinics on Friday will be held in Callender, Moorland, Otho and Duncombe. To register for a vaccine, call WCHD at 515-573-4107.

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