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'We are poised and ready.' Novant Health reliant on state for more vaccine doses

Novant Health will open their first mass-vaccination site in Winston-Salem on Monday but they need more doses of the shot from the state to vaccinate more people.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — There is mounting frustration over vaccine distribution in the Triad. Novant Health is ready to open a mass-vaccination clinic at Hanes Mall in Winston-Salem on January 25th that will be able to vaccinate 7,000 people a day.

The problem, they say, isn't the ability to give the vaccines, it's getting vaccines from the state.

"We are limited by what the allocation is from the state," Nikki Nissen said. "So while we are poised and ready in both space, workflow and staffing, we can only deliver the amount we get from the state which is quite limited."

More than 100,000 people have scheduled vaccines with Novant - all appointments are full through March. But Novant Health said people 65 and older should check back with them regularly because more appointments become available as they get more shots from the state. You can also put yourself on a wait list for a vaccine appointment. 

In addition to the mass vaccination sites - Novant is also rotating between three different locations in Winston-Salem communities every Saturday to vaccinate people. The first is January 23rd at Union Baptist Church. All of the appointments are booked this weekend but they plan to announce new locations soon.

"The sites and community events on Saturdays can range based on that allocation anywhere from 150 to really 300 or 500 based on the allocation we get from the state," Nissen said.

The big takeaway here - Novant says they're ready and able to vaccinate 95,000 North Carolinians a week and people want the shots, they just don't have the doses to make that happen yet.