SPOKANE, Wash. — The Spokane arena could open Tuesday if a delayed vaccine shipment arrives on Monday, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
Due to storms on the east coast, shipments of both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were delayed. Pfizer vaccines could arrive Monday, according to the DOH. Moderna vaccines will arrive by Wednesday.
The site will prioritize second doses this week and make up any first dose appointments that were rescheduled due to last week’s closures.
People who have had their appointments rescheduled should have received an email and/or text message on with a new date and time window, according to the Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD).
People who have appointments scheduled for this Sunday, Feb. 21 or Monday, Feb. 22 will receive phone calls from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) to reschedule them for later in the week when the location is open. The mass vaccination site currently operates Tuesday through Saturday.
DOH staff are calling these patients directly. The caller will already know the date and time of the original appointment and will only be rescheduling, a spokesperson for SRHD said. Patients will only be asked to verify their identity with date of birth and contact information and won't need to provide personal health information.
If a patient feels uncomfortable or wants to verify the caller is “real," they should call the DOH COVID-19 hotline at 1-800-525-0127 and press # to talk to a representative. DOH will direct the patient to the correct phone number to confirm their rescheduled appointment.
The Ridgefield and Kennewick mass vaccine sites are expected to reopen Tuesday. If the Ridgefield site receives its allocation before Wednesday, it will be fully operational next week and prioritize second doses. The Kennewick site will only administer second doses next week.
Appointments available later than usual:
CHAS anticipated offering 4,000 appointments based on scheduled vaccine supply from the DOH, according to a press release sent on Monday. Kelley Chavet, a spokesperson for CHAS, said Week 4 appointments would be offered later than normal to account for the possibility of delays in the doses' arrival.
All appointments for the Spokane Arena's mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic were full less than an hour after more slots opened on Tuesday of last week.
First and second dose appointments for the mass vaccine clinic opened at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 16 through the CHAS Health website. Those who experienced difficulties on the website were able to call 509-444-8200.
The online and phone scheduling lines for the vaccine clinic were full less than 20 minutes after more slots opened and all appointments had been filled by 5:40 p.m. Appointments are managed by the Washington State Department of Health, CHAS said on Twitter.
The mass vaccine clinic at the Arena administers the Moderna vaccine for which a booster should be given one month or 28 days after the first dose.
More than 40,000 people have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at Washington state's four mass vaccination sites, including those located in Kennewick and Wenatchee, according to the DOH. The sites in Wenatchee, Kennewick and Ridgefield will prioritize second doses of the vaccine this week. They administer Pfizer's shot, which requires a booster three weeks of 21 days after the first dose.
How to schedule and confirm appointments
The mass vaccination clinic at the Spokane Arena is open Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Vaccinations are available by appointment only to those who are pre-registered and eligible for the vaccine under Phases 1A or 1B-1.
Phases 1A and 1B-1 include:
- High-risk healthcare workers in healthcare settings
- High-risk first responders
- Long-term care facility residents and staff
- All other workers at risk in healthcare settings
- All people 65 years or older
- All people 50 years or older in multigenerational households (home where individuals from 2 or more generations reside such as an elder and a grandchild)
Patients can also confirm their appointment online by logging in with the same username and password they created to make their original appointment.
Confirmed appointments will show with the date and time of the appointment scheduled. If a person believes they have a confirmed appointment but it is not showing in their profile, they should call CHAS Health at 509-444-8200 to confirm their appointment.
Patients should bring a copy or screenshot of the PhaseFinder tool showing their eligibility, a photo ID and insurance card if they have it on the day of their appointment.
Health officials recommend that those who are eligible for the vaccine first check with their primary healthy provider about vaccinations before scheduling an appointment at the Spokane Arena site.
What to know before you go
A representative from CHAS said people should show up no earlier than five to 10 minutes before their scheduled appointment. The average time for vaccine appointments, including the 15-minute observation period, is 20 to 25 minutes, CHAS said.
If you did not schedule your second dose while in observation, CHAS asks that you follow the instructions provided in your vaccination packet.
Make sure you dress for the cold weather because you may have to wait in a line outside the arena. Washington National Guard members are available to help with mobility issues.
CHAS said metal detectors will be set up at the entrance to the Spokane Arena and ask people to leave weapons of any kind at home.
People should use the Boone Avenue entrance to access the Spokane Arena. A greeter will direct them to a check-in line where staff will confirm their scheduled appointment and direct them to a parking area. Once inside the Spokane Arena, people will receive a COVID-19 screening questionnaire and be directed to the waiting area to receive the vaccine.
Transportation help is available
Those who need transportation assistance can use Paratransit for to get to the Arena once their appointment is scheduled:
Paratransit door-to-door service is available for anyone over 60 with proof of ID. For those over 60 years old who do not have a Paratransit bus card, it is $2 each way and $4 for round trip. Cash is the only form of payment that will be accepted.
Patients can call 509-328-1552 to schedule a Paratransit ride once their vaccine appointment is scheduled.