After more than 35,000 shots given since late December, the city of McKinney and its community partners announced their intention to phase out operations at their vaccination hub and facilitate the transition to private health providers and more normalized channels of vaccine distribution. Hub operations at the McKinney ISD Stadium and Community Event Center will conclude by April 30.
The McKinney Fire Department began vaccinating Dec. 23 when doses were in short supply, and the state needed assistance getting vaccinations out efficiently and quickly.
“We created the vaccine hub to assist the most vulnerable in our community, and we have had a major impact jump-starting the vaccination process in Collin County,” Mayor George Fuller said. “We stood up the vaccination program until the private sector could stand up. Now it’s time to let employees return to their normal duties, give our volunteers a much-deserved break, and let private health care providers like physicians, hospitals, and pharmacies take over the public vaccination efforts. We will continue to assist our community by providing thorough information and serve as a community resource to help folks find where they can get vaccines. The health and wellbeing of our community remain our highest concern as we continue to navigate this pandemic.”
The McKinney Fire Department will complete all second doses for those who received their first dose from the hub. Though the McKinney Fire Department will not schedule public vaccination appointments after this date, they will continue to provide vaccines to senior living centers and other highly vulnerable populations.
“As first responders, we are trained to jump into action to save lives. On our first day of operating the hub, we gave 67 vaccinations, with high fives all around for a job well done. Since then, we’ve worked our way up to giving 2,000 doses in a single day,” Fire Chief Danny Kistner said. “It has been an honor and a privilege to fight back against Covid-19 by vaccinating the public, not only for the members of the McKinney Fire Department and city employees but the many organizations and volunteers that have come together to make the vaccination hub a successful operation.”
The city of McKinney gratefully acknowledges the partnership within the community between Collin County, McKinney ISD, Baylor Scott & White Medical Center McKinney, Medical City McKinney, Collin College, and Grayson College. City staff, including those in the Fire and Police Departments, the Office of Emergency Management, Housing and Community Development, Communications and Marketing, Information Technology, Public Works, and multiple volunteers across all city departments have provided support for the hub and the city’s Covid-19 hotline. The city also uses volunteers from its Citizen Corp partners, including the Citizen’s Fire Academy Alumni Association (CFAAA) and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). The hub could not have been successful without their contributions.
Residents looking for vaccine providers can visit the Collin County Health Care Services website and the DSHS vaccine website that lists large vaccination hubs, a vaccine availability map, and a list of all providers.
“I encourage everyone to get vaccinated when their turn comes. Science has proven vaccines to be safe and effective. After becoming fully vaccinated, it is still essential to follow all recommended public safety measures, including mask-wearing, maintaining social distancing, and routinely washing your hands,” Kistner said. “Please stay the course with these protective measures to best protect yourself, your family, and your community.”