As the DuPage County Health Department’s community vaccination clinic relocates to the county fairgrounds in suburban Wheaton, many residents of the area hope that the move will help make the COVID-19 vaccine more accessible to a wider swath of people.
Shirley Holt and her husband Richard are two of those residents. Both in their 80s, the Wheaton-residents say they’ve run into a slew of roadblocks in trying to get the vaccine.
“You feel like you’re swimming and there’s a lifeboat, but they’re not sending you the life equipment,” Shirley said.
The Holt family, like countless other residents, have spent hours on websites trying to get updates on when they can get the vaccine.
“It’s very time-consuming, and you don’t get results,” she said.
According to the DCHD, more than 100,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered to residents, and 2.88% of its residents have received both doses of the vaccine. Those numbers lead all the collar counties surrounding Chicago, according to DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin.
For a complete look at where and how you can make a vaccine appointment in Illinois or to receive vaccine information for your area, click here.
Even still, Cronin says that he understands why residents are frustrated that they haven’t been able to get the treatment yet, blaming supply issues.
“If you are frustrated or afraid, wondering when or how you’ll be vaccinated, I want you to know your DuPage County leaders are working furiously to bring more vaccine to this county and get you vaccinated as fast as we possibly can,” he said.
To help achieve that goal, county health officials are transforming the fairgrounds into the area’s main vaccine clinic, with the goal of vaccinating 5,000 people per week if supply allows. The move is endorsed by political leaders in the area, including Rep. Lauren Underwood.
“I remain committed to ensuring our community has the federal resources it needs to vaccinate efficiently and equitably,” she said.
That news is welcome to people like Shirley Holt, who say that they hope the fairgrounds vaccination site will get her to her spot in line more quickly.
“This would be close, convenient, and it would be wonderful,” she said.
The clinic will open its doors Wednesday, and it will be open by appointment only, according to a press release. For more on how to sign-up click here.