Another successful clinic—thanks to volunteers and the work of our community-based organizations
SOUTH SACRAMENTO — March 19, 2021 — The Pannell Center hosted its second pop-up vaccination clinic on short notice and welcomed nearly 570 members of the community thanks to the availability of Pfizer vaccine from Sacramento County. And once again, the clinic increased the vaccination rate in Sacramento's most vulnerable zip code.
Supervisor Kennedy's office hosted the event. Building upon groundwork laid by Councilmember Mai Vang, who had meticulously coordinated a grassroots registration campaign with key community partners for the previous week, Kennedy's office widened the net to even more organizations who are already serving priority tier populations, particularly those who may be underinsured, uninsured, or without the technology to capture the limited vaccine appointments available through mainstream healthcare providers.
"This is all possible due to the help of our volunteers," Kennedy said, in an opening message before the clinic doors opened.
The vaccines were apportioned from the county's supply, thanks to the support of Mike Nguy of the County's equities task force and the county's top doc, Dr. Olivia Kasirye.
Dr. Rusty Oshita, a champion of many pop-up clinics and more than 20,000 doses in service of the county's vaccine distribution efforts, headed medical operations for the clinic through Urgent Care Now. Dr. Oshita was successful in securing an additional 75 doses, allowing registration to expand from 500 to 575.
In less than 48 hours, more than 150 energetic volunteers signed up through Equivax to assist in the effort, with 70 selected to participate by Marika Rossetto and the logistics team. Preference was given to early sign-ups and bilingual volunteers, who welcomed patients speaking 12 different languages.
An energetic spirit
Allison Joe, a volunteer heading the hospitality efforts, brought hot pork baos from a local bakery, along with fresh fruit for patients to grab on their way out. Another volunteer, Rosette Nguyen, hand-stenciled "Thank you" in signs in various languages and placed them throughout the Pannell Center. Many volunteers even drove great distances to be part of the effort.
Working in an emergency department, I've seen so many families broken by COVID. I've seen how this turns out. It feels awesome to be here and part of the solution where it is needed most.Anna Ryan, RN
New processes speed up registration and reporting
The second clinic allowed for improved welcome and registration processes to shorten wait times, with the average time for patients being 28 minutes from walk-up to discharge. There were several innovations that made this possible:
- Multi-language consent forms - One particular innovation was the release of consent forms in multiple languages, including Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Tagalog, and Russian, with additional languages coming soon, thanks to our partnership with Excel Interpreting.
- Fast-track lane - patients and their supporting community-based organizations may now print out and complete all paperwork beforehand from the Equivax website and proceed directly to check-in.
- Real-time dose tracking allowed volunteers to call patients who had missed their scheduled morning appointments and ensure they could still get their doses before releasing their doses to qualified walk-ins.
- Gradually increasing appointment density - By reducing the appointment density to 10 appointments every 15 minutes for the first hour, all stations got a "warm-up" period to develop a rhythm before going full tilt.
- More laptops and iPads - thanks to City of Sacramento IT and Sacramento Office of Emergency Management, dozens of computers and iPads with WiFi and MiFi backups worked seamlessly to meet the digital demands of the clinic
More improvements are on the way, thanks to Michelle Barry and Kevin Jenkins who created a more efficient drive-thru process, and Nikolas Rechtiene who has proposed a more efficient welcome area configuration for the next clinic.