As Texas has surpassed the milestone of fully vaccinating one-third of its population against the coronavirus, some counties are lagging behind. In rural Anderson County, the rate of fully vaccinated residents is just shy of 25%. This has some doctors worried.
In Palestine, two doctors are taking matters into their own hands. Doctors Carolyn Salter and her husband, Michael Gorby, are on a mission to get vaccination rates up in their part of East Texas. The couple's office, Sycamore Medical Clinic, has administered over 2,600 doses since the vaccine became available to them in March. But their work is far from over.
The doctors' goal is to reach a vaccination rate of 75% in their community, which they believe will be enough to achieve herd immunity. While infection rates and deaths are down from their peak, the specter of a resurgence keeps Salter up at night. She's concerned more contagious and deadly variants — already detected in Texas — could begin spreading through the unvaccinated population in the coming weeks.
But with vaccines available for months now, the number of still-unvaccinated Anderson County residents interested in receiving the shot is dwindling. That's where Salter and Gorby come in. In addition to offering the shot to practically anyone they meet, they've been arranging pop-up vaccine clinics around the area, sometimes traveling hours to administer the shot to as a few as five people.
In this documentary short, we follow Salter and Gorby as they venture to the nearby city of Trinity to a last-minute vaccination clinic at a fire station.