More vaccines for underserved residents in the Metro East

Illinois

CENTREVILLE, Ill. – The state of Illinois has announced a new partnership that will provide hundreds of additional COVID vaccines for those in need. Governor J.B. Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health are teaming up with Touchette Regional Hospital to serve residents in the Metro East. Between 300 and 500 more doses of the COVID vaccine are heading to the hospital.

Jay Wilsher, president of Touchette Regional Hospital, said it’s great news for the community.

“We’re near the end of this pandemic but we need to stay vigilant and we encourage everyone to get vaccinated,” he said.

“We’re very excited to learn that the governor and the Illinois Department of Public Health has chosen our organization to help dispense 300 to 500 doses per week to the Metro East.”

According to the governor’s office, this is part of a broader pilot program in coordination with five federally-qualified health centers and five safety net hospitals statewide. Touchette Regional Hospital in Centreville is one of them.

“Right now, we don’t have all of the details regarding how we will distribute the vaccine. We will distribute the…doses within a week and we will continue that cadence,” Wilsher said. “So, we just look forward to disseminating the correct information so that people will know and helping out the Metro East.”

The program also hopes inform residents who may be apprehensive about getting vaccinated.

“We’ll address vaccine hesitancy and, as we all know, the more people that we get vaccinated, the sooner we can end this pandemic,” Wilsher said.

The partnership between the state and Touchette, along with other providers, will ensure communities hit hardest by COVID-19 have more access to the vaccine.

Vaccines for residents are by appointment only.

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