Health department, hospital host 600-dose COVID vaccination clinic

Steve Nash
Brownwood Bulletin
Staff at an earlier drive-through vaccination clinic at Gordon Wood Stadium dispense shots.

About 60 workers from multiple organizations staffed Wednesday’s COVID drive-through vaccination clinic at Gordon Wood Stadium, which was hosted by the Brownwood/Brown County Health Department and Hendrick Medical Center Brownwood.

The clinic was made possible after the hospital received a shipment of 600 vaccine doses. The clinic focused on remaining qualifying health care workers in the “1A Phase,” as well as individuals over the age of 65 years old with specific pre-existing health conditions as outlined by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), the City of Brownwood said earlier. 

Vaccinations were given on an appointment basis, with appointments scheduled at five-minute increments, to qualifying individuals who previously signed up on the Health Department’s vaccination contact list.

As additional vaccine shipments arrive, the Health Department and Hendrick Brownwood will plan additional large-scale vaccinations, the city said.

Workers from organizations including the hospital and health department, City of Brownwood, Brown County, Lifeguard Ambulance, Community Emergency Response Team and health care students from Howard Payne University and Ranger College staffed the clinic.

Workers were stationed at multiple locations in the visitors parking area at the stadium,  and cones marked off six lanes for vehicles. Staff checked in vehicles near the entrance to the parking lot, and minutes later, the vehicles were in the area where the vaccinations were given. Vehicles then moved to another area so those who had received vaccinations could be observed for 15 minutes.  

Brown County Emergency Management Coordinator Darrell Johnston talks with a driver in the post-vaccination observation area Wednesday at Gordon Wood Stadium

Local officials said earlier they were confident the state would see that Brownwood and Brown County can run a successful vaccination clinic.

"It is going very smoothly,” Brownwood City Manager Emily Crawford said as the clinic progressed Wednesday morning. “We have a tremendous amount of help. This has been a great opportunity to show the state we can have a large-scale vaccination clinic.”

Brownwood Fire Chief Eric Hicks, who is also the emergency management coordinator for the city, said 80 appointments had been scheduled an hour with the goal of avoiding waiting times.

“The event has gone well,” Hicks said, adding it has been good training for the next vaccination clinic. 

The staff began the vaccinations at 9 a.m. and continued until 4 p.m. All of the doses were given, Crawford said.