BEAUFORT, S.C. (WSAV) – Beaufort Memorial is canceling more than 6,000 scheduled vaccination appointments through March until more supplies are available on hand.
Hospital officials say a statewide shortage is to blame.
According to the South Carolina Hospital Association, next week, hospitals will only receive 20-25% of requested COVID-19 vaccines.
Beaufort Memorial officials say they placed three orders totaling more than 2,000 doses to fulfill many appointments but were notified Friday they would only receive 450 doses.
“We understand that the national vaccine supply is somewhat limited; however, the fact that we placed these orders over a week ago and were just notified by the state that they cannot be fulfilled is disappointing,” said Beaufort Memorial President and CEO Russell Baxley.
“South Carolina hospitals have been working very hard to follow the state’s guidance to serve the best interests of our communities, but we cannot do it without consistent and reliable supplies,” Baxley added.
All second-dose vaccination appointments will be honored, officials say. But the hospital will be putting an additional 6,000 appointment requests on hold and has closed its vaccine call center until further notice.
“We know this has been both frustrating and confusing and we appreciate everyone’s patience as we work through these logistical challenges with the state,” Baxley said. “Please know that we are committed to making sure every person who wants to be vaccinated will be vaccinated eventually.”
Only two other hospital locations in the Lowcountry are offering vaccinations to the expanded group of anyone age 70 or older.