1,200 Knox County residents 65 and older to get COVID-19 vaccines Thursday

Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 9:44 PM CST
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GALESBURG, Ill. (KWQC) - About 1,200 people 65 years and older can get vaccinated on Thursday. The Knox County Health Department has three clinics set up to open by 8:30 a.m. for its senior residents.

Knox County Health Department’s Public Health Administrator Michele Gabriel explains Knox County is one of the first 50 counties in the state to receive the vaccine due to the county’s “significant death rate for this small of a county. And we see a lot in the hospital from that in this age group, so we wanted to target those that are getting the sickest.”

“We wanted to target those that are getting the sickest.”

Michele Gabriel, Knox County Health Department’s Public Health Administrator

The clinics will allow for social distancing and preparing for potential traffic. Gabriel says they’re preparing for high turn-out and have already communicated with local police and set the clinics up in locations where there are pockets of traffic so traffic isn’t as affected. Those who show up to receive the vaccine should wear a mask and will have to wait 15 minutes after getting inoculated to “make sure there are no adverse reactions” which are unlikely. It’s also possible that if it’s too busy, you may be asked to wait in your vehicle in some clinics. “Be patient when you’re there and follow directions when you’re there. They’re doing it with your best interest at heart to serve as many in one day. Patience is going to be key, it really is, “says Gabriel.

With 4,68 positive cases and 114 deaths in Knox County as of Wednesday afternoon, many residents see this vaccine as a step in the right direction. “It’s important because really, people are ready for things to open back up,” says Gabriel.

“I’m hoping that my in-laws who are over 65 will be able to get theirs soon,” says Sharon Watkins, who already received the vaccine because she works in the healthcare industry. “I think it’s a good thing, it’s a thing we need to get things back to normal,” she continues.

Tina Browder, a Knox County resident agrees, “I think it’ll be good. I think it’s a significant percentage of this county and population with over 10% of the people already having COVID-19.” She goes on to say, with more people and those in healthcare vaccinated, it will “hopefully cut down on caseloads and deaths.”

Vaccines will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. The next shipment will be available next week.

You must bring an Illinois ID and face mask to get inoculated.

Clinic addresses:

  • Farm Bureau Building:
    • 180 S. Soangetaha Rd, Galesburg
    • 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
  • Cottage Medical Office Building:
    • 834 N. Seminary St, Galesburg
    • 9-11 a.m. & 1-4 p.m.
  • OSF Healthcare St. Mary Medical Center will be offering vaccinations to their patients who set up an appointment ahead of time.

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