Both health and county leaders are pleading with the state to fill shipments and help them help the communityBy Nicole Ford

BEAVER, Pa. (KDKA) – Hospitals and health departments in Pennsylvania are starting to vaccinate the expanded Phase 1A population.

In one week, the Heritage Valley vaccine registration list went from 5,000 to 25,000 people wanting to be vaccinated.

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“We had to quickly regroup and find a process,” said Laurie Clemens, the chief human resources officer at Heritage Valley.

Heritage Valley is the health system working alongside county commissioners to get more doses in more arms.

“We are getting about 2,000 a week. We’d love for that to be doubled. We are ordering 5,000. So the more we can have, the more we will administer,” Clemens said.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Space to administer is no issue, though. On Thursday morning, the dome at Beaver County Community College opened its doors as the first mass vaccination site in the county.

“We are ready here in Beaver County to distribute in a large quantity, and we have the capability to do so. We just need more vaccines to flow into this region,” said county commissioner Dan Camp.

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Because of a limited supply and a huge demand, the clinic is prioritizing people over the age of 80 this week.

“We need more vaccines. That is our number one priority, to just get our shipments,” Clemens said.

Both health and county leaders are pleading with the state to fill shipments and help them help the community

“That’s why we were pushing, not necessarily to prioritize by age or job function, but just give us the vaccines because we have the capabilities to vaccine anyone in Beaver County who wants it and we are ready to roll that out,” Camp said.

The dome at the community college is only the first mass vaccination site. Camp said the commissioners are working with school districts to use gyms and auditoriums if the dome ends up not being big enough.

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To register for the COVID-19 vaccine distribution through Heritage Valley Health System, click here or call 724-770-7555.