Benson, N.C. — People were waiting in the dark at 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday more than five hours before a drive-thru COVID-19 vaccine clinic opened in Johnston County.
The clinic, which will run from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. or until vaccines run out, will be held at West Johnston High School at 5935 Raleigh Road.
The clinic is for senior citizens 75 and older who fall into the Phase 1B, group 1 category. Only 500 people will be able to get vaccinated at the event.
No appointments are needed for the clinic, which will be first-come, first-served. Although supplies are expected to run out quickly, the drive-thru style will keep senior citizens inside their cars and out of the rain during the long wait.
Louise Davis was one of the senior citizens in line before 5 a.m.
“I thought about it on the way out here — I’m very thankful that we have it, I’m glad that we can get here in time to get it today, but it’s almost surreal,” Davis said.
Faye Johnson said it feels “crazy” to be in line for the COVID-19 vaccine “but I’ve got a big family of children and grandchildren and great grandchildren, and I want to be around as long as I can to be with my family.”
A third person waiting, Shelton Davis, said, “I’m trying to take care of myself. This seems like a pretty good way to do it.”
The Johnston County Health Department said additional drive-thru clinics, as well as vaccinations by appointment, will be offered as the vaccine becomes more available.
Any remaining individuals who qualify for the vaccine under Phase 1A will be eligible during the drive-thru clinic.
Johnston County residents can register to receive alerts and updates on COVID-19 vaccination clinics and testing on their phones by texting COVIDJOCO to 888777.