Mecklenburg County Begins Taking Walk-Ups At Most Vaccine Clinics
Mecklenburg County has begun taking walk-up appointments at most of its vaccination sites, according to Deputy Health Director Raynard Washington, and he says the county hopes it will boost the number of Black and Hispanic residents getting vaccinated.
According to Washington, the county quietly began accepting walk-ins at most of its sites last week, including at the Bojangles Coliseum. The county didn't advertise it, because health officials still want people to make appointments to cut down on lines and overcrowding.
But by accepting walk-ins, the county hopes to attract people who might otherwise not sign up for an appointment.
That includes people like Steven Lawrence. He works at the Blue Barn Bistro at Camp North End, where the county held a pop-up vaccination clinic on Saturday. He said he's been skeptical of the vaccine for a while.
"I did not plan on getting it at first. I did not. I was a little iffy about it," he said.
But he was on his lunch break Saturday, and clinic staff said he could walk right in.
"I was just like, I'm here, why not?" he said.
So, he got in line, entered the clinic, and 20 minutes later, he was out the door with a vaccine card and a smile.
"This is like, awesome," he said, "If it wasn't a walk-up, I probably wouldn't have did it."
There's evidence in other cities that walk-up clinics can greatly improve vaccine equity. One clinic in Philadelphia saw its number of Black and Hispanic residents grow by 50% during just one week of accepting walk-ins.
Washington says walk-ins are being accepted at most county-run locations, including a pop-up clinic at the Southview Recreation Center off West Boulevard Monday.
People in Mecklenburg County can visit the county's website to find upcoming clinics and make appointments. Some clinics may still require appointments depending on supply.
Where To Get A Vaccine In Mecklenburg County
StarMed Healthcare: New appointments for the Bojangles Coliseum, Sheraton Hotel and other locations open every Wednesday beginning at 8:30 a.m. Walk-ins are welcome.
Charlotte LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce, 3520 Dewitt Lane: Schedule an appointment for April 22.
Calvary Christian Church of the Apostolic Faith Inc, 3001 Kilborne Drive, Schedule an appointment for April 24.
MEDIC: Mecklenburg EMS Agency, 4425 Wilkinson Boulevard, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Schedule an appointment here.
Bank of America Stadium, 800 S. Mint Street: Atrium Health is hosting mass vaccination events at the stadium throughout the month of April. Visit AtriumHealth.org/COVID19vaccine to find details and make an appointment. Walk-ins are welcome.
Novant Health is offering vaccines at a variety of its locations around the Charlotte area. Visit the health system's website to find a location and make an appointment.
Appointments are also available through the following pharmacies: