Tarrant County

Tarrant County Prepares to Open First Drive-Thru COVID-19 Vaccination Sites

NBC 5 News

Tarrant County is preparing to open its first drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination sites this week.

Plans are still being finalized, but Vinny Taneja, director of Tarrant County Public Health, said they were set to open a drive-thru site Friday at the parking lot between Farrington Field and the Billingsley Field House in Fort Worth.

Taneja said Friday is the tentative launch date, but it is weather dependent.

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“The goal is to do a soft launch on Friday. Not a whole lot of people, maybe 500 or 600, just to make sure everything works,” he said.

If weather conditions worsen, Taneja said it was possible they would open the site on Saturday with about 1,000 appointments. Earlier this week, officials with TCU announced they would be opening a drive-through site on Saturday around the university’s Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth.

Want to Get on a Vaccine Waitlist?

As the state begins to distribute the COVID-19 vaccines for those in Phase 1A and 1B, county health departments have begun waitlists for those wish to be inoculated.

You can now register to recieve the vaccination in Collin, Dallas, Denton and Tarrant counties. Links are below:

Waitlist Links: Collin - Search Waitlist | Dallas | Denton | Tarrant

You do not need to be a resident of the county to register for a COVID-19 vaccine in that county -- registration is open to anyone in Texas. For those without internet access, Tarrant County is also taking registrations by phone at 817-248-6299. In Dallas County, call the DCHHS vaccine hotline at 1-855-IMMUNE9 (1-855-466-8639). In Denton County, call 940-349-2585.

For a more detailed breakdown of who is included in each priority group in Texas, see this page from the Texas DSHS.

“Their goal is three days a week also, I think Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That, again, is because supply is limited,” Taneja said. “Once supply becomes more abundant, we could go to five days, six days depending on what the need is on either location.”

As of Tuesday, there were no plans to close any existing sites due to weather. However, Taneja said it was possible they would have to make adjustments.

“If we close the sites, they kind of get backed up, and then other people are due for their multiple doses and it just becomes harder to get out of it. There’s thousands of people due for their second doses,” he said. “We certainly don’t want to not utilize the supply of vaccine we’re getting, because that’s a sure-shot way of slowing down the allocation. There’s a lot of things in balance.”

Starting Wednesday through Friday, Taneja said most sites will only invite people who are trying to get their second dose. There may be exceptions at some locations for people if they need a first dose, such as rescheduled appointments.

There’s also a possibility hours will be scaled back slightly, Taneja said.

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