NC partners with Charlotte organizations to distribute 1M vaccinations by July 4

NC partners with Charlotte organizations to distribute 1M vaccinations by July 4

CHARLOTTE — Novant Health and other state providers have started vaccinating people aged 65 and older. Novant announced six mass-vaccination sites across North Carolina and the goal of delivering close to 95,000 doses a week to meet demand for the vaccine.

Novant officials say those plans depend on supply. If the state can provide that number of shots, then Novant can meet the need.

“Then, yes, our plan would be to be able to vaccinate seven-to-ten thousand people a day in the Charlotte market. If we have the supply for that,” said Dr. Pam Oliver, Novant Health executive vice president.

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Novant plans to open two mass-vaccination sites in Charlotte. It is still finalizing plans for one of the sites, but the second site would be at the Spectrum Center.

Meanwhile, Atrium Health has partnered with Honeywell, Tepper Sports and Entertainment, and Charlotte Motor Speedway in an effort to distribute a million vaccinations by the Fourth of July.

This is part of Gov. Roy Cooper’s announcement earlier this week to open mass vaccination sites across the state.

Both Bank of America Stadium and Charlotte Motor Speedway will serve as the initial venues, according to a news release. They’re also looking for another one in the Winston-Salem area.

“In collaboration with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, these organizations aim to unleash their combined strength to vaccinate as many frontline workers, members of the general public and of underserved communities as quickly and efficiently as possible,” the release said.

Times and dates are still being worked on.

Earlier this week, Cooper and Secretary of DHHS, Dr. Mandy Cohen, announced Atrium Health as the health system to offer mass vaccination events in Charlotte and surrounding counties.

To meet the goal of 1 million vaccinations, the partners will work together to administer the vaccine, provide logistics and operations support and offer a venue for an efficient and safe initiative.

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Quick hits:

  • Honeywell, Atrium Health, Tepper Sports & Entertainment and the Charlotte Motor Speedway have announced a unique public-private partnership with the State of North Carolina, and backed by Gov. Roy Cooper, to support the goal of 1 million COVID-19 vaccinations by July 4, 2021
  • In collaboration with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, these organizations will work together to administer the vaccine, provide logistics and operations support, and offer a venue for an efficient and safe initiative.
  • Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte Motor Speedway and a soon to be determined location in the Winston-Salem area will serve as initial venues to contribute to this public-private initiative. More details will be shared in the coming days on the process and timing for each of the mass vaccination events.
  • More information about Atrium Health’s vaccination plans for the public, including FAQs, can be found here.

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State health officials also expanded plans to create new mass-vaccination sites in North Carolina and said they will put them in 23 counties, including Mecklenburg and Cabarrus.

Cohen said vaccines for the new sites will be diverted from areas that have had problems getting rid of it quickly.

“This week, we’re able to take that,” Cohen said. “That vaccine that may have gone to them in the past couple of weeks, we’re able to use that and concentrate it in some of these higher throughput sites.”

To learn more about the events, visit the websites of the providers that can be found here.

Here’s what the players involved had to say about the partnership:

“Getting vaccines in people’s arms as quickly and equitably as possible is a top priority for North Carolina,” said Cooper. “Partnerships with businesses, health providers and government like this can help get it done.”

“I am very pleased that Honeywell is leading this coalition of private and public organizations that will strive to put North Carolina on the top of the list for vaccination rates in the United States and to get as many North Carolinians vaccinated as soon as possible,” said Darius Adamczyk, chairman and chief executive officer of Honeywell. “Honeywell is world-renowned for managing highly complex logistics, information technology and operational issues, and we’re looking forward to helping streamline the vaccination process to deliver as many vaccinations as efficiently as possible to our community.”

“I’m incredibly proud of the nationally leading models of care we continue to offer our community, like distributing over 2 million masks, eliminating testing disparities in underserved communities, developing our Atrium Health Hospital at Home program, and now this incredible goal of reaching 1 million vaccinations by July 4,” said Eugene A. Woods, president and chief executive officer of Atrium Health. “Through public-private partnerships like this, we have the opportunity to defeat this virus, allow children to return to school and help local businesses return to normal operations.”

“COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on our community and country,” said David Tepper, owner of Tepper Sports & Entertainment. “We stand ready to join Honeywell, Atrium Health and Governor Cooper in the effort to administer vaccines and defeat this virus. We hope that our participation will serve as a model for other venues.”

“In our business, it’s all about speed and safety,” said Marcus Smith, president and chief executive officer, Speedway Motorsports. “Last year we moved quickly alongside Atrium Health to create on-site drive-thru testing as well as produce COVID-safe drive-in movies, concerts and our Christmas light show. We want to accelerate the process of getting the general public back to its next normal, where people can enjoy everyday activities and sporting events safely. We’re ready to support this aggressive vaccine initiative and help restore our community to good health.”

“Our entire community must join together to beat this pandemic and I appreciate all of our partners coming together to help address this critical issue,” said Vi Lyles, Mayor of the City of Charlotte. “We look forward to supporting this work to ensure that our residents have access to COVID-19 vaccines, and we all look forward to working together to help our community get vaccinated in the coming weeks and months.”

“We look forward to working with our partners to make this happen,” said Gibbie Harris, public health director for Mecklenburg County. “The only way to get the virus behind us is for people to be vaccinated. I also hope that by July, by working together, we can exceed the goal of 1 million people in this region starting to be protected.”

Handful of mass COVID-19 vaccination sites to be set up across NC, Cooper says

Novant Health to open 6 statewide mass vaccination sites delivering 1 million doses by April

Novant Health on Thursday announced it will open six mass vaccination distribution sites across the state after a commitment by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) to increase its COVID-19 vaccine supply allocation.

The health care system has requested 95,000 doses a week in order to meet high demand and ensure equitable and efficient distribution of the vaccine. There will be one in Brunswick County, two in Winston Salem, one in Rowan County and two in Charlotte -- including the Spectrum Center.

“The people of North Carolina deserve a vaccination program that leads the nation in speed, scope and efficient distribution,” said Carl S. Armato, president and chief executive officer of Novant Health. “We appreciate the state’s support and are eager to activate our plan to immediately, and significantly, increase vaccination rates across North Carolina.”

The state’s commitment to increasing allocation comes at a critical time with its expansion of phase 1b, group 1, to include a larger population of senior citizens age 65 and older. To ensure additional populations across all communities are able to access the vaccine as soon as they become eligible, Novant Health’s mass distribution plan can accommodate up to 20,000 vaccines a day. If Novant Health receives a weekly allocation of 95,000 doses from NCDHHS, the health care system has the capability to administer 1 million doses by the beginning of April.

While more details are forthcoming, the mass vaccination sites will more than quadruple the amount of appointments available in each community. Novant Health is partnering with climate innovator Trane Technologies, who will provide large-capacity SuperFreezers to support safe and ultra-cold storage of the vaccine, as well as logistics expertise to help the sites run as efficiently as possible.

Additionally, Novant Health is working with the Charlotte Hornets to utilize Spectrum Center in various activations during the vaccine distribution process. The Uptown arena would provide people easy access to the light-rail line.

“Our plan not only optimizes for speed, scale, and efficiency, but more importantly, ensures equity for all,” added Armato. “We have to work together - across health care systems and county lines - to be certain no community is at a disadvantage. At the end of the day, our collective goal is to vaccinate as many people as quickly possible, leaving no dose unused and no community behind.”

To date, Novant Health has administered over 18,500 vaccines for team members during phase 1a in North Carolina, 4,500 of which were second doses of the vaccine. Since patient vaccinations began on Jan. 5, the health care system has vaccinated more than 3,300 patients 75 and older across its footprint in North Carolina, with thousands of appointments scheduled through March.