© 2021 St. Louis Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Coronavirus

St. Louis FEMA Site Offers Second Doses Of Pfizer COVID Vaccines To Walk-Ins

Sailors in the U.S. Navy prepare to open the large-scale vaccination site at the Dome at America's Center on April 4.
File photo / Sarah Fentem
/
St. Louis Public Radio
Sailors in the U.S. Navy prepare Sunday to open the large-scale vaccination site at the Dome at America's Center.

St. Louisans planning to drive hours away to get a second Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination can now find one closer to home.

A federally run clinic at the Dome at America’s Center downtown is offering second doses of the Pfizer vaccine to Missouri residents, with no appointment needed. People seeking shots need to bring their vaccination cards at least 21 days after their first Pfizer dose.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency site is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. until June 2 and aims to increase the vaccination rate among vulnerable groups in St. Louis. It has the capacity to administer 3,000 shots a day, but the site opened on Wednesday to a slow start. Only 713 people had signed up for a vaccination. On Thursday, the site vaccinated more than 1,000 people.

FEMA can vaccinate up to 168,000 people at the clinic in the Dome at America's Center over the next two months.
FEMA can vaccinate up to 168,000 people at the clinic in the Dome at America's Center over the next two months.

Throughout the vaccine rollout, health officials have told people to go to the same site for their first and second shots. FEMA officials decided to open the site’s availability to walk-ins because it has an abundance of doses.

“Why would we not want to provide a vaccination for a person wanting the shot?” said Deanne Frazier, a spokesperson for FEMA.

FEMA and Navy medical personnel will administer doses of the Pfizer vaccine for the first six weeks, then switch to Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccines for the last two weeks.

Health officials say people coming to the Dome should cancel their original appointments at other sites before coming, so doses aren’t wasted. People can do that by either calling the facility or responding to their appointment notification through email.

St. Louis and Jefferson County have the lowest vaccination rates in the Missouri side of the metro area, with 20% of its population having begun the process as of Thursday. That’s 9 percentage points below Missouri’s reported statewide average. St. Louis County and St. Charles County are at 28% and 27%, respectively.

Starting Friday, all Missouri adults are eligible to receive the vaccine.

To schedule a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the FEMA clinic downtown, schedule an appointment online or call 877-435-8411.

Follow Kayla on Twitter: @_kayladrake

Maps are Mapbox, OpenStreetMap. Improve this map.

Send questions and comments about this story to feedback@stlpublicradio.org.