Bucks County is opening its own vaccine clinics next Tuesday for some members of the public. But supply is still low.
The clinics will open at Bucks County Community College’s three campuses in Bristol, Newtown, and Perkasie.
During a press conference Thursday, interim Director of Emergency Services Audrey Kenny said these sites will get 200 doses per day. They will operate from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
The county will select people who have registered using the county’s vaccine portal. Like the rest of Pennsylvania, Bucks is in Phase 1A of the distribution plan.
“Everything will be registration based,” said Kenny. “It will not be walk-in appointments or drop-ins.”
Officials expect the number of doses available per day to increase. They expect it to reach 500 per day by the end of February.
While a step in the right direction, this total is still relatively low compared to the thousands who qualify under Phase 1A. Medical workers, people with high risk health conditions, the obese, smokers, and others qualify under 1A.
Commissioner Gene DiGirolamo is urging patience.
“I know it’s easy to say ‘we’re asking everyone to be patient,’ but that’s what we’re going to have to ask you,” said DiGirolamo. “We are doing everything we possibly can to make sure we’re ready when the vaccine starts to come in volumes.”
The Commissioners again expressed frustration with the rate of distribution from the state and federal government.
Bucks County Commissioner Bob Harvie say the county health department has only received 14 percent of doses in Bucks. Meantime, hospitals and pharmacies have gotten the other 86 percent.
“There isn’t any stockpile. We’re using it,” said Harvie.
Officials also indicated they are in talks with other potential sites. County officials did not confirm any specific additional locations at the request of these sites.
State numbers show about 34,000 people in Bucks have received partial vaccinations. Nearly 13,000 are fully protected.