The Indianapolis Motor Speedway opened the state’s first mass vaccination site Friday. Gov. Eric Holcomb and other state officials received their COVID-19 vaccine.
The IMS will host a drive-thru clinic Friday through Monday and administer the Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccine. Holcomb said the shot was painless.
“This is easy peasy,” Holcomb said. “It’s free. We want to encourage every eligible Hoosier to get vaccinated, it’s going to help us get through this quicker than we already are.”
Saturday marks one year since Indiana’s first known COVID-19 case.
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Holcomb said he was encouraged by the scale of the mass vaccination sites.
“What’s kind of fascinating to me is this weekend because of these mass vaccination sites, we’re soon to surpass the total number of positive COVID-19 cases with full vaccinations,” Holcomb said.
Nearly 17,000 Hoosiers will be vaccinated at the IMS through Monday. Dr. Lindsey Weaver, Indiana Department of Health chief medical officer, said the one-shot vaccine at the site will accelerate Indiana’s vaccination process.
“The most amazing part of it is within four days we’ll have those 17,000 people will be fully vaccinated,” Weaver said. “So it’s not you know, coming back in three weeks or four weeks, it’s really they’re starting to build their antibodies, as they drive out of here today.”
About more than 4,000 people will be vaccinated at the IMS each day. Additional mass clinics will be hosted March 12 and 13 at Ivy Tech Community College in Sellersburg and March 26 and 27 at the University of Notre Dame’s Compton Family Ice Arena.
This story was produced by Side Effects Public Media, a news collaborative covering public health.