ANNAPOLIS, Md. — It started out as just a parking lot, but workers have erected this makeshift clinic in the shadow of Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in just a week’s time where it eventually will be able to vaccinate as many as 3,000 people per day.
The difficulty will be competing with other sites for a limited supply of vaccine, made that much more scarce by Johnson & Johnson’s pause in distribution for now.
“Just to put it in perspective, we did about a half million shots in the last seven days and we’re about a hundred thousand per week short so it’s about a 20 percent or whatever that equates to reduction in what we’re planning for, what our goals were and what they said they were going to give us,” said Governor Larry Hogan after touring the site on Friday.
The stadium is now one of 3,000 places you can get vaccines in the state, including health departments, pharmacies and doctors offices, and the state has built its infrastructure to deliver the vaccine, including 160,000 doses expected next week.
“We’re going to keep driving it,” said Maryland Health Secretary Dennis Schrader. “As the governor said, we’ve done over 50 percent of all of the adults over 18. We’ve done over 81 percent of all of the seniors. We had an audacious goal to have all of this done by Memorial Day and the governor hasn’t backed off on that so we’re going to be driving.”
The race continues to beat the spread of the variants of the virus, and on this day, for the first time in a month, the seven-day positivity rate dropped below four percent, but the governor cautions this marathon is far from over.
“All of the states to the north of us are much, much higher, including Pennsylvania and Delaware, extremely high. Michigan is, I think, four or five hundred percent higher than we are… New York… Florida,” said Hogan. “We happen to be one of the lucky ones, but we’re not immune.”
The site will run until midshipmen return to the Naval Academy, but it will be closed on April 25th for the Army-Navy lacrosse game and during Commissioning Week.