Hundreds visit mass vaccination clinic in Yemassee


YEMASSEE, S.C. (WSAV) – South Carolina health officials are bringing mass vaccination events to rural parts of the state.

On Thursday, it was Yemassee’s turn.

The lines started outside the Yemassee Community Center at 6 a.m., even though the doors didn’t open until 10 a.m.

People from the small town were excited about getting a vaccine locally.

“It was a wonderful feeling to be close to home and get it done right here in my hometown,” said Ron Shaw.

That was the goal of Congressman James Clyburn and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control officials when they set up this series of clinics.

“You aren’t far from anything but you aren’t close to anything either,” explained Jeremy Simmons of Carolina Pharmacy. “If you are homebound and need some transportation, you need something local, something important to get life back to normal.”

Simmons runs a series of pharmacies in the area and donated his time to vaccinate — and help his neighbors feel safe.

“We take advantage when you live in the city and you can hop on the bus or get somewhere right down the street. You don’t have that option in Yemassee,” he said.

It’s estimated about 200 people would visit the site Thursday.

That may not seem like many until you realize there are only 1,200 people living in the town.

“We had some elderly people, and I noticed this morning we had a lot of those, and I was one of them,” said Yemassee Mayor Colin Moore. “And I waited until it was here. It was a whole lot more convenient.”

Not only was it convenient to be close to home, but residents were given the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. They won’t have to return for a second shot.

Clyburn hopes this type of event will help bring people in all of these rural towns the feeling that someone is watching out for them and their health.

“I’m convinced from my own research and the studies that I’ve done this is a safe vaccine, and it is not worth the risk not to take it,” the congressman said. “It may not keep you from getting sick, but it will certainly keep you alive.”

This won’t be the last of this type of clinic in rural areas of the Lowcountry. Events in Hampton and Varnville are set up for next week with Allendale County and Bamberg County in the next 10 days.

The COVID-19 mass vaccination sites announced are open 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.

Hampton County:

  • Monday, April 12 – Hampton County Administration Building, 200 Jackson Avenue, Hampton
  • Tuesday, April 13 – Varnville Town Hall, 101 Town Circle, Varnville

Allendale County:

  • Thursday, April 15 – Allendale Community Center, 202 E. Flat Street, Allendale
  • Friday, April 16 – Fairfax Mini-Mall, 128 Sumter Avenue, Fairfax

Bamberg County:

  • Monday, April 19 – Bamberg County Courthouse Annex, 1234 North Street, Bamberg
  • Tuesday, April 20 – Denmark Technical College, 1126 Solomon Blatt Blvd., Denmark

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