Wayne County Health Department schedules COVID-19 vaccines amid power loss

Wayne County Health Department schedules COVID-19 vaccines amid power loss

WAYNE COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – As some people wait their turn for the COVID-19 vaccine, the recent winter weather has made that process more challenging for some health departments.

“I tried to call here yesterday and the day before and there was absolutely nothing but a busy signal,” said Doug Hood.

A loss of phone service and power at the Wayne County Health Department has made it challenging to schedule COVID-19 vaccinations.

“I had to show up cause I’m gonna get this shot,” Hood said.

Nursing Director Tracey Sebastian says these obstacles have led her to come up with alternative ways to reach her patients.

“The process to get these appointments made today was going home with cell phones and calling off lists for hours to try and get people to answer the phones or get back with us,” Sebastian said.

However, since these calls were coming from cell phones rather than the health department’s main number, not everyone was quick to answer.

“They don’t even know who these cellphones are, so they have to call back just to see who it is … and it’s me on the other end trying to give them an appointment at the health department, Sebastian said.”

Although Sebastian started this journey alone, she says she has been joined by several volunteers to make these vaccinations happen.

While power loss may cause obstacles, Hood counts the shining moments.

“It’s a miracle. I got heat and I got my shot, what else can I ask for,” Hood said.

Sebastian says if someone from the Wayne County Health Department tries to reach you from a number that does not belong to the health department, they will circle back and call you again — plus try to leave a voicemail.

Copyright 2021 WSAZ. All rights reserved.

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