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Covid Vaccine Notes: Arena Site To Open Wednesday, Second Dose Advice

Doug Nadvornick/SPR

Spokane’s mass Covid vaccination site is scheduled to open Wednesday at the Arena. It will be operated by CHAS Health, which has been operating a testing site in the facility’s parking lot.The clinic is a response to a request by Washington state officials to open a place big enough to vaccinate large numbers of people at one time.

The caveat is that there are enough doses available. That’s not a sure thing. A CHAS spokeswoman said on Friday that the agency had not yet received the vaccine for Wednesday’s event. CHAS says people who want to be inoculated will have to register that morning on its website for an appointment. There will be no “show up and get your shot” option. They say more details will be available on Tuesday.

Many who have received their first doses are wondering how and when they’ll receive their required second shots.

“The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices came out on January 6, putting out guidance that mirrors a lot of the vaccines that we already work with, saying that, if you do not make it within that 28-to-35-day period that is recommended for that second dose, there is no need to start over. You can get your second dose as soon as you can get an appointment. There is no need to start the series over," said Kayla Myers from the Spokane Regional Health District's Covid Vaccine Task Force.

Many, but not all, providers are scheduling second shots at the same time people receive their first poke. But others are using all of their vaccine on first shots, hoping that future vaccine shipments will be available for second doses.

The demand is increasing now that Washington has opened up vaccinations to people 65 and older.