SPANISH FORK (ABC4 News) – As the state of Utah gets more doses of vaccine and more residents become eligible to receive them, thousands of Utah County residents will head to an unusual place to get immunized: a former department store.
The parking lot was full at the former Shopko store in Spanish Fork Thursday morning and old signs were still up inside, but these customers were here for shots, not shoes.
“It’s kind of a different experience for sure,” Aislynn Tolman-Hill of the Utah County Health Department said.
Call it “Shotko”. The UCHD has turned the 71,000-square foot retail space into a mass vaccination center, a second venue to accompany their headquarters in Provo.
“One of the other great things is it’s all one level. Our building in Provo, while it’s large, it is multi-level,” Tolman-Hill told ABC4. “We’re able to get much larger numbers of residents through a lot more quickly than we are in our large Provo facility.”
Last week, the UCHD administered 6000 doses of the vaccine, their entire allotment, before running out on Friday.
“It’s a good sign,” Tolman-Hill said. “It means that we are getting doses in arms each week as quickly as possible and it’s showing we have good capacity to do that and it’s an exciting thing for our community.”
With Utah expecting to jump from 33,000 incoming doses a week to 100,000 a week by April and more segments of the population eligible to get the vaccine, officials say this big box store can handle the big crowds.
“We absolutely anticipate that this facility will get busier,” Tolman-Hill said. “As we get more vaccines, we absolutely can increase that capacity here in this facility which is a great thing.”
If you are in an eligible group, you can make an appointment to get the vaccine at https://health.utahcounty.gov/covid-19-vaccine/