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Waterloo vaccine clinic looks to increase accessibility, accepting all adults

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WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) - The Antioch Baptist Church partnered with UnityPoint Health to host a COVID-19 vaccine clinic to help more Iowans get the shot. If you missed the Wednesday clinic, the church is hosting another on Thursday.

The clinic at Antioch Baptist Church accepted almost 40 walk-ins after vaccinating those who had an appointment. The turnout was anticipated to be much larger than it was.

"If someone walks in here we will vaccinate," UnityPoint Health Waterloo Chief Medical Officer Dr. Russell Adams said, "For us, it's a matter of as many vaccines as we can get in arms, the better for our entire population."

Black Hawk County Health has been reporting a lower vaccination rate for the area. Wednesday's event was a way to put focus on a clinic where people live.

"We have a concentration of African Americans in the area code of 50703 which also is a reason for us being in this location," Dr. Adams said.

The event was advertised on social media, web pages, and email. Church members even made their way around the surrounding neighborhood to pass out over 200 fliers for those who might not have access to the internet.

"We didn't know if they had not been reached out to or whatever and we were trying to reach out to that area because we wanted to make sure that they were also being vaccinated and had an opportunity to receive the vaccine just as everyone else did," Director of Christian Education Martha Frazier said.

One of those fliers made its way into the hands-on Waterloo resident Stacy Cole, who had been a bit nervous to get the shot.

"People that I've to know that have gotten it, they're okay, so I said 'what the heck' and my doctor was like 'you have to get it. You have to get it," Cole said.

She lives in the same neighborhood at Antioch Baptist, which made it convenient for her to make her way over to get her shot. The clinic also gave out the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine so a second appointment isn't needed.

"It's close and it's beneficial for people in this community that might not have a car and can walk, so I think it's a great idea to have it in this church," Cole said.

Thursday's clinic will be from 2-6 p.m. at Antioch Baptist Church at 426 Sumner St. in Waterloo. Walk-ins will only be accepted if they have extra doses, as they did at Wednesday's clinic.

You can call 319-226-2601 or 319-226-2604 to schedule an appointment.

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Diego Hernandez

Multimedia Journalist

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