BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD)- For the past week the Bon Carre Business Center has transformed into a federal mass vaccination site. However, according to officials from the Louisiana Department of Health, the vaccine site is only reaching to hundreds when they have access to 3,000 vaccines a day.
Officials from Mayor President Sharon Weston Broome’s office say the reason behind a lower turnout is because of the lack of awareness of the vaccine site.
“This is a very busy time of year for folks: School years are beginning to wrap up, people are working jobs during the day; there’s a lot happening and we know that. We are encouraging people to find time to make it to the site, but it won’t happen overnight,” said Mark Armstrong, spokesperson for the Mayo’s Office.
Armstrong is confident the mass vaccine site is going to see an increase as more people are getting their covid shot and help spread the word.
“Getting people vaccinated is a race against time,” he said.
“There’s been some individuals who bring in family members be vaccinated and we encourage everyone who is eligible to receive that vaccine,” said James Writer, Family Physician with the US Navy.
To encourage East Baton Rouge residents to roll up their sleeves, EBR Parish is offering free Uber rides to the vaccine site. The CATS transportation service is also providing rides to vaccine sites and community members are going door to door to inform residents about the shot.
“The way we avoid any more restrictions and put an end to this pandemic is by getting as many people vaccinated as possible. We are trying to make getting the vaccine as easy as possible, whether through the free Uber rides, being able to drive through or even walk up to the site,” said Armstrong.
According to the Louisiana Department of Health, 25 percent of East Baton Rouge Parish is fully vaccinate for the coronavirus. However, city officials say the goal is to reach a higher percentage.
“I personally have been vaccinated and revised the Pfizer vaccine and I think it’s safe and effective,” said Writer.
The federal vaccine site operates Tuesday through Sunday, with drive-through hours from 8 a.m. To 6 p.m. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays; 10 a.m. To 8 p.m. On Wednesdays and Saturdays; and 10 a.m. To 6 p.m. on Sundays.
The site is administrating the Pfizer vaccine.
A full interview with LDH is available below.