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Vaccine clinic to offer more opportunities

ELKINS — Officials said there will be opportunities for more local residents to receive COVID-19 vaccinations at Thursday’s Mass Vaccination Clinic at the Phil Gainer Community Center.

Not only will more residents receive phone calls alerting them that they are scheduled to be vaccinated on Thursday, but other individuals who are not on the appointment list may also be able to get inoculated.

Because many in the area have already received their vaccinations, more doses are steadily becoming available, officials said. Local residents are urged to call 304-637-6820 if they or anyone they know needs the vaccination. They are being asked to call today only and from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Thursday’s clinic will run from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Boost doses will be given in the morning and prime doses in the afternoon. The clinic gave out more than 1,300 doses to citizens last week alone.

Health officials reported during the county’s weekly COVID-19 update conference call Monday that there were currently 25 active cases in Randolph County.

“Two Fridays ago we were at 11 active cases, but the past two weeks we’ve been back up in the 20s,” said Bonnie Woodrum, the Randolph-Elkins Health Department’s infectious disease specialist. “I’m thinking with the pretty weather, ball games and bars, that number may continue to go up unless people are careful.

“If people take care and the more care they take, the more freedom they will have. I understand the need to get back to normal, but it’s not normal yet.”

The Mass Clinics are expected to end sometime around mid-April. When they do, target clinics, physicians’ offices and pharmacies will be distributing the vaccines.

Woodrum said the mass clinics have run smoothly thanks to a group effort.

“It’s lovely to see the way people have pulled together and gotten it done,” she said. “It’s been a total community effort on everyone’s part.”

Woodrum said COVID-19 cases in the schools in the county seem to be sporadic, with no in-class spread detected at this time.

On Friday, the state Department of Education released figures saying the county had eight current positive COVID-19 cases, including five in Tygarts Valley Middle/High School, and one case each in Elkins High School, Beverly Elementary School and Coalton Elementary.

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