ELLSWORTH — With vaccination numbers rising across the state, receiving a shot of the Moderna, Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson vaccine against COVID-19 is as easy as 1, 2, 3 when compared to early on.
Frustrations Mainers experienced trying to schedule an appointment just a few weeks ago are largely gone. Now, someone seeking a vaccine can simply walk into the Northern Light vaccination clinic on High Street during open hours and receive a first dose of the Moderna vaccine, no appointment needed.
And, the clinic is not shutting down, at least not in the immediate future, according to Kelley Columber, communications director for Northern Light Maine Coast and Blue Hill hospitals.
“We are not closing the community vaccination clinic on High Street at this time,” Columber said. “However, we are looking to expand vaccination opportunities in our practices located throughout Hancock County.”
As of May 4, the total doses of vaccinations administered in the state stood at 1,188,284, with 57 percent of the eligible population (ages 16 and up), or nearly 650,000 residents, receiving their first dose, and 543,999 their second dose, according to data published by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In Hancock County, 51,785 doses have been administered with half of residents having received at least a first dose. The High Street clinic has administered 2,951 doses. The clinic opened on April 1, with 320 doses of the Moderna vaccine on hand and still has a strong supply, Columber said, which allows the site to accept walk-ins.
The clinic, which is located between Shaw’s and Renys, is currently open on Thursdays from 4 to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for anyone 16 years of age and older to receive a first Moderna dose. To register for a vaccine at the High Street clinic, visit covid.northernlighthealth.org or call 204-8551.
Like the Pfizer vaccine, the Moderna vaccine requires two shots, spaced three to four weeks apart, while the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a one-shot deal and is offered through Hannaford pharmacies. After a two-week pause in April following reports of an extremely rare but serious blood clot side effect, the Maine CDC has resumed administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.