COVID Vaccine: States Using Mobile Clinics
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Minnesota and Texas are 2 US states using mobile clinics to administer COVID-19 vaccines. Minnesota uses mobile vaccine clinics to reach high-priority individuals who have difficulty traveling to a vaccination site. Texas launched mobile vaccination clinics to serve rural communities with little or no access to healthcare services. These and other services are outlined below.

Minnesota

Decision-Making in Mobile Clinic Setup

  • The state of Minnesota requires COVID-19 vaccine providers to undergo official registration via the state’s electronic survey.
  • The registration includes provider agreement, organization approval, and vaccine management training among others.
  • Once registered, it is up to the vaccine providers to decide where and when to set up their clinics.

Number of People Vaccinated via Mobile Clinic

  • The state of Minnesota has not provided a breakdown on how many citizens have received COVID-19 vaccinations via mobile clinics.
  • However, Minnesota’s Vaccine Data page shows the number of provider sites that have received vaccines from the state (click ‘Distribution’ section on the Vaccine Summary dashboard).
  • These include 6 community vaccinator sites, 8 tribal health sites, 14 specialty provider sites, and 17 other sites, all of which may include mobile clinics.
  • The Washington Post also reported on February 24 that 6.6% of Minnesotans have completed both vaccinations.

Communication/Advertising

Key Reasons for Using Mobile Clinics

  • Minnesota vaccine provider CentraCare stated that its ‘mobile strike’ vaccination team reaches high-priority individuals who have difficulty traveling to a vaccination site.
  • CentraCare medical incident commander Dr. George Morris said, “This is targeted for the most vulnerable, the most at risk, the individuals or the situations where it’s harder for them to come to us.”
  • The provider has used its mobile strike team to vaccinate 38 counties across the state and neighboring areas.
  • Minnesota is empowering providers to set up their own vaccination schedules in order to reach more people within the state.
  • Minnesota Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan said, “We have a long way to go to ensure every Minnesotan has the opportunity to get their shot. But our most vulnerable relatives, friends, and neighbors are receiving the protection for which they’ve waited so long.”

Press Coverage

  • Minnesota Public Radio News reported that mobile strike vaccination teams are reaching the most vulnerable individuals and communities in the state.
  • Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that Governor Tim Walz was encouraged by the decreasing rate of positive COVID-19 cases following the rollout of vaccination sites including mobile clinics.
  • WJON reported that the Minnesota Department of Health partnered with CentraCare to distribute Moderna COVID-19 vaccines via mobile clinics.

Texas

Decision-Making in Mobile Clinic Setup

Number of People Vaccinated via Mobile Clinic

  • The Texas COVID-19 Vaccination Data dashboard does not give a breakdown of vaccine doses given via mobile clinics.
  • However, Dallas News reported that the mobile clinics deployed in the 5 rural counties will give 100 shots each.
  • According to Washington Post’s report published on February 24, 5.4% of Texans have completed both vaccinations.

Communication/Advertising

  • WFAA reported that counties inform people of mobile clinics and take appointments for vaccination schedules.
  • Distribution hubs in Texas are also required to set up registration websites and phone numbers to manage community vaccinations.
  • Schedules for mobile vaccination clinics were communicated via websites and phone calls.
  • Judge Leward Lefleur of Marion County shared, “We did like a hybrid…50 vaccines were given online. And then 50 phone calls, more like 600 phone calls that came into my office, the first 50 of those people that called we put them on a list and we gave it over to the state.”

Key Reasons for Using Mobile Clinics

  • Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that the State Mobile Vaccine Pilot program specifically targets underserved areas in the state.
  • The program is deployed to 5 rural Texas counties namely Sherman, Marion, DeWitt, Real and Starr.
  • Governor Abbott said, “The State Mobile Vaccine Pilot Program will help us ramp up vaccination efforts among homebound Texans, Texans 65 years of age or older, and among communities in need… We will continue to develop strategies to vaccinate more Texans and keep our communities safe.”
  • Texas Department of Emergency Management spokesperson Seth Christensen said the initiative will expand to urban areas as well: “Underserved areas exist in both urban and rural settings, and this pilot program will be expanded in partnership with local officials to address both.”

Press Coverage

  • Dallas News covered the deployment of mobile vaccine clinics in 5 rural counties in Texas.
  • WFAA reported that a non-profit called LVTRise partnered with MedStar and the Tarrant County Public Health to deploy a mobile vaccine clinic in the area.
  • The Texas Tribune reported that the Texas National Guard also deployed teams in the state’s mobile clinics to vaccinate people.
GLENN TREVOR
Glenn is the Lead Operations Research Analyst at The Digital Momentum with experience in research, statistical data analysis and interview techniques. A holder of degree in Economics. A true specialist in quantitative and qualitative research.

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