SAN ANTONIO – More pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinics happening citywide are helping San Antonio close in on the one million mark for first doses given.
So far, there are 995,047 that have received their first dose and another 741,238 that are fully vaccinated as of Thursday evening, according to Metro Health.
But, Metro Health reports another 666,567 still need their first dose.
“We need to do more, much more,” said Archbishop Gustavo Garcia Siller, who is urging parishioners to get vaccinated as well.
The archbishop said he would like to see more parishes in Metro Health’s growing list of pop-up clinics.
But he recommends they be done on Sundays so that whenever people go to mass, the vaccinations will be on site for their convenience.
“People are ready to give it to you. Please, please, for your own sake and the sake of all, get vaccinated,” Archbishop Garcia-Siller said.
Dr. Kenneth Kemp, pastor of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, said having a pop-up clinic at its sports complex last month on a Sunday worked out better than he initially thought.
Kemp said he wondered if it would affect people who actually were coming to church, but not to be vaccinated.
“What I found was a lot of folks who came to church turned right around to get the vaccine, who would not have gotten the vaccine otherwise,” Kemp said.
But he also said the response that day was “decent, but not great,” with only 120 shots given over eight hours.
“We certainly would have like to have done a whole lot more,” Kemp said. “We had the capacity to do more.”
Its second pop-up clinic in conjunction with Metro Health will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, at the Antioch Sports Complex.
He said it also will be open to children ages 12-15, but others wanting the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine are welcome, although they’ll have to go elsewhere for their second shot.
Rudy Arispe, Metro Health spokesman, said working with the faith community and community-based groups has been a successful partnership.
“We would, of course, like to see higher numbers of people showing up to be vaccinated,” Arispe said.
As a result, Arispe said Metro Health will be do more promotions and incentives are in the works.
He said Metro Health will be offering more mobile clinics throughout San Antonio, and host pop-up clinics at Fiesta events.