Availability of booster shots for the Pfizer version of the COVID-19 vaccine is expanding in North Texas.
A large distribution site began offering booster shots Monday at the Ellis-Davis Field house at 9191 S. Polk Street in Dallas south of I-20.
Booster shot recipient Joseph Jordan said he would strongly recommend vaccination to his neighbors.
"I would tell them get it as soon as it is available because you don’t want to be hospitalized or have a severe illness. Go ahead and get the shot. Especially if you don’t want to die," Jordan said.
The booster is only being made available to people who have previously received the Pfizer vaccine at least six months earlier and who also fall under any of the following criteria:
- People who are 65 years old or older.
- People who live in a long-term care setting.
- People age 18 and up who have underlying conditions that put them at high risk of COVID-19.
- People age 18 and up whose work puts them at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19.
Parkland Health and Hospital System operates the Ellis-Davis location.
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Parkland site manager Samia Zia said most people understood the criteria as they requested booster shots Monday, but there is not a clear-cut definition of who is considered high risk.
"Those individuals who’s occupation would make them high risk, for example, health care workers because we’re in touch with COVID patients," she said.
The Ellis-Davis vaccine site is open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Many other locations are now offering booster shots along with first shots, including grocery stores, pharmacies, clinics and a Dallas County Vaccination booth at the State Fair of Texas.
More than 40% of the Dallas County population is still unvaccinated and Dallas County Health and Human Services spokesman Christian Grisales said the COVID-19 threat level is still the highest level, red.
Grisales said the urgency was highlighted Monday with news of the death of a female youth from Mesquite in her 10's with underlying high risk conditions who died due to COVID-19 in an area hospital.
Children under 12 are not currently authorized for vaccination but 12 and over are eligible for first and second doses of the Pfizer vaccine.
"The vaccine is widely available in the county, in the state, anywhere in the US, so people have really no excuse," he said.
As of Monday morning, Grisales said more than 250 people had received shots at the fair since it opened Friday. The fair location has supply for up to 500 shots a day and offers any of the three first shots, Johnson and Johnson, Moderna or Pfizer. Pfizer booster shots are also available at the fair for those who qualify.
"We invite everyone to take action today to prevent the spread of COVID and death," Grisales said.
At the Ellis-Davis Field House, booster shot recipient Viola Andrews said she now feels more confident about her safety but hopes other people will get vaccinated, too.
"I feel great. I feel good. I feel a little more good about moving around, you know? I’m not stuck at the house like I have been," Andrews said. "It doesn’t hurt. It was nothing. It was good. Get the shot people, please.
Texas COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
Data from the Texas Department of State Health Services shows where COVID-19 vaccines have been sent around the state. Click on a marker to find out information about each location. Use the "plus" and "minus" signs below to zoom in and out of the map.
From the Texas DSHS: Availability of COVID-19 vaccines lilsted on this map are based on shipping information and reporting to the DSHS directly by facilities. Please contact providers in advance to confirm vaccination location and hours, that they have vaccine on hand and that you are eligible for vaccination at that site. Not all providers are vaccinating the public or people in all priority groups. Vaccine is available at no charge, regardless of insurance status.