Old Saybrook opens drive-thru clinic to vaccinate teachers, daycare providers from eight towns against COVID


OLD SAYBROOK, Conn. (WTNH)– Today is the first day teachers and daycare providers are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine and many of them lined up to get their shots at the Old Saybrook Middle School.

Julie Pauley was the first in line to get her COVID 19 vaccine at the Old Saybrook clinic Monday. So how was she feeling?

“Just anxious,” said Pauley. “Ready to be vaccinated and be on the way of a little more safety zone.”

She is a special education paraeducator at Westbrook schools. 

“I work one on one with students so we’re close,” said Pauley. “No matter what.”

This drive-through vaccination clinic set up at the Old Saybrook Middle School is available right now to school and daycare employees in the eight towns served by the Connecticut River Area Health District. They are Haddam, Killingworth, Clinton, Westbrook, Chester, Deep River, Essex, and Old Saybrook.

“It was very good thank you,” said Barbara Kanizaj, a food service worker at Old Saybrook schools when asked how it went and if it hurt. “No it did not.”

The drive-through clinic has been up and running since December. After people register while staying in their car, they then drive over to a white tent to get their shot, and then they drive through a couple of medical stations to make they’re feeling okay before they are sent on their way.

“It’s a constant flow of movement until you reach your fifteen minutes,” said Old Saybrook Police Chief Michael Spera.

Fifteen minutes is the mandatory wait time after the person receives their COVID-19 shot to make sure they aren’t experiencing any side effects.

“So today will actually top 7,000 vaccines given at this clinic in Old Saybrook,” said the chief.

The town has also created its own website vaccinateeducators.com where people can sign up for the clinic. They don’t even have to go to the VAMS system first.

“We actually take care of all of that for them,” said Chief Spera. “So we’ve made it very very simplistic for all of our educators. Remember that pre-k through 12, any of our college professors that are in the area, or any of our dedicated healthcare and daycare providers they all get to come to our clinic.”

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