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LouVax Closures Not Expected To Cause Long-Term Issues With Vaccinations

Louisville's first mass vaccination site at Broadbent Arena on January 4, 2020.
Louisville's first mass vaccination site at Broadbent Arena on January 4, 2020.

Despite two straight days of vaccination site closures, Mayor Greg Fischer is confident Louisvillians will get the shots they signed up for.

Louisville Metro health officials closed the LouVax coronavirus vaccination site at Broadbent Arena again Tuesday because of snow. And although more closures are possible this week due to wintry weather, Fischer was reassuring during a press conference.

“Don’t worry, you’re going to be fine,” Fischer said. “The shots and dosages are reserved for you, whether it’s on your first dose or your second dose.”

LouVax will extend its hours and operate on Saturday to catch up on rescheduled appointments. Health officials said the weather will not affect the long-term vaccination timeline.

Metro chief health strategist Dr. Sarah Moyer said the city’s goal is to administer 90% of the doses it receives each week. The LouVax site should be able to continue reaching that goal in a matter of days.

“We will probably be off by a few days just for the closure yesterday and today, and depending on what happens with the weather the rest of the week,” Moyer said. “We are planning on extending hours and catching up a little bit on Saturday this week, just to catch up with that 90%. We expect to be on track with the timeline again next week.”

COVID-19 case totals continued to drop in Louisville over the past week. Moyer reported 2,130 cases in the past week, the lowest weekly count since October.

Hospitalizations are also down at 244. Nearly 60 Louisvillians are in the ICU, and 38 are on ventilators.

Moyer said the wintry weather could push numbers even lower, since people aren’t leaving their homes.

“Pretend every day’s a snowstorm and continue to limit where you go and who you’re around, and we can see our numbers continue to trend down in the coming weeks if we can do that,” she said.

Moyer announced 23 new deaths over the past week.

Road crews in Louisville will continue working to clear away snow and ice. Another storm is expected to move through the area this week.

John Gordon of the National Weather Service said the storm may cause “a big mess” Wednesday night, with snow, sleet and freezing rain throughout the state.

“My inclination is this is going to be a snow and sleet event on our side,” Gordon said. “To the east, unfortunately where there’s no power in eastern Kentucky, it will get worse before it gets better.”

The snow has caused delays in trash pickup, and Metro officials are asking residents to be patient while progress is made on the routes.

John, News Editor for LPM, is a corps member with Report For America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Email John at jboyle@lpm.org.