Hanover County makes special effort to vaccinate seniors

Posted at 11:44 AM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-15 12:30:08-04

HANOVER COUNTY, Va. -- Health officials in Hanover County are having special vaccination events this week, hoping to cross seniors 75 and older off the waiting list.

"We want as many of our elderly population to get out here and get vaccinated this week," said Chickahominy Health District director Thomas Franck.

Kenneth and Zaida Lorente are two of the seniors Hanover County is working to target. The 82 and 86-year-old pre-registered for the vaccine about a month ago, and they recently got an email giving them the green light to make an appointment.

"We’re feeling super good," Kenneth explained. "It just said basic instructions and was very simple, easy to read, and I think the Virginia Department of Health has done a great time in the time they had to organize it."

The health district has vaccinated about 60% of those 75 and older, but Franck says there are still around 1,500 residents who have pre-registered online and have yet to schedule appointments.

He worries technology may be holding some of these seniors back.

"They don’t always want to answer that phone call because they don’t know who it’s coming from," said Franck. "Some elderly don’t have computer access, or they are not it savvy, and so that is a challenge."

That's why Hanover County is launching a new phone line where those waiting for a vaccine can call them at (804)-365-3240 to schedule an appointment.

"Somebody on that line will be ready to pick up the phone and answer any questions to get those people enrolled," Franck explained.

The call center will be staffed during the workweek from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day. The county will be holding vaccination clinics this Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the former Food Lion building in the Ashland Junction Shopping Center.

Franck says if you are 75 or older and have not scheduled an appointment, give them a call, and they will work to get you your vaccine before the end of the week.

According to the health district, about 35,000 vaccine doses have been administered to Hanover residents.