Officials with District 2 Public Health say the COVID-19 vaccination site at the University of North Georgia's Gainesville campus will begin accepting walk-up patients for the vaccine on Wednesday.
Dave Palmer, public information officer with District 2 Public Health, says this change was made because demand for the vaccine at the UNG site is declining.
"We're trying to encourage everyone to come on and get vaccinated, now it's a good time when we're not as busy as we have been," Palmer said.
Palmer said walk-up patients will be accepted between 9:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. starting Wednesday at the UNG Gainesville Campus. He also said this will expand to other counties in the region.
This comes after a Monday report from WSB-TV that all nine of Georgia's GEMA mass COVID-19 vaccination sites will close on May 21 due to a decrease in demand for the vaccine. The Habersham County Fairgrounds vaccination site is included in this May shutdown, according to the WSB-TV report.
According to a press release from the Office of Governor Kemp, the sites will shift to administering single-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccines and second dose Pfizer vaccines until the close date. First dosages of the Pfizer vaccine will not be administered at those sites after April 30.
Leyna Mashburn, RN, immunization coordinator with District 2 Public Health, said there have been a few discrepancies when it comes to the demographics of who has received a COVID-19 vaccine so far.
"It does seem across the board that the older population has been more open to vaccination and that we do have some disparities when it comes to the younger population," Mashburn said.
Mashburn said at the moment, the UNG vaccination site offers a variety of times five days a week to get vaccinated, but moving forward, District 2 Public Health will be moving directly into the community to help get people vaccinated.
"We're going to focus even more on getting out into the community where we're targeting business, churches, civic organizations, where we can actually bring the vaccinations to them," Mashburn said.
While walk-up patients will soon be accepted at the UNG vaccination site, those interested can still register for an appointment at www.phdistrict2.org.