It looked a bit like a crime scene at the corner of Hangar and Brooks Road on the Griffiss Business and Technology Park, but there was no trouble happening. The Sheriff’s Department is assisting in the County’s first COVID-19 drive-through vaccination site. The lights on top of the police cars are to let you know you’re in the right spot, and Deputies are helping with traffic, safety concerns, and vaccination questionnaires. The real trouble seems to be getting an on-line appointment.
Utica Resident John Russo: "It was a very hard time. I was trying for 3 days, and then this site came up, and then I had problems once I got in. It stopped for something, and then we had to get back in."
New Hartford Resident Doreen Reynolds: "Oh this was the first one that opened up. My daughter was on-line all that day waiting for it to open up, and as soon as it opened up she got on, got me the appointment. I think I was the third one, and within 5 minutes it was full."
Canastota Resident John Spinelli: "The appointment was probably an opportunity. It’s very difficult. It seems like you have to be on the computer religiously to find an opening. So a little bit lengthy, but worth it in the long run."
People who showed up to the vaccination site too early were asked to return at their scheduled time, but there wasn’t much of a line and people commented how the operation is smooth and well organized. Oneida County Public Health Director Daniel Gilmore is happy with the way the vaccinations are going.
"Some people are anxious. Some people just want to rest a bit because they have a little bit of anxiety leaving to the shot. They actually don’t like vaccines, so they want to rest and recover from that, but we have not had any significant reactions requiring any medical attention at this point and time."
So far things have been moving very smoothly, and the County does expect to keep the Griffiss site open so long as they have vaccines to dispense.