‘I’m just busy’: Employees getting vaccinated at work through coalition efforts

Channel 2 Morning Edition (6 a.m.)
Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 7:00 AM AKDT|Updated: Apr. 20, 2021 at 3:54 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - On Monday, employees at Carlile Transportation in Anchorage showed up to work with a chance to take care of getting their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The one-day clinic is part of the Conquer COVID Coalition’s Vax Up Alaska effort to increase vaccination rates by setting up clinics in private businesses.

The clinic on Monday was only available to Carlile employees, their families, and employees and family members of sister companies according to President Terry Howard.

The Conquer COVID Coalition has more clinics coming up that will be available to the general public. On Thursday, April 22 there will be pop up clinics at Alaska Club South and New Hope Baptist Church. People can register for those clinics here.

When companies have employees moving around as much as truckers do, Howard said it can be harder for them to find time to make an appointment and then be available to actually make it to the appointment with their delivery schedules.

“Well we know that some of our employees aren’t able to make it to some of the conventional locations during normal business hours because of their busy schedules,” Howard said. “Again, as essential service we’re delivering everyday all day. So by having it here they can come in during their break, during lunch, before or after work.”

Bryan Toler was one of the first employees with a shot in his arm Monday morning. He said he actually forgot that Monday was the clinic day, but it didn’t matter. He said he showed up, clocked in, and had the vaccine in his arm within 10 minutes.

Toler confirmed that the lives he and his coworkers live on the road takes up a lot of time. He’s also got a family, and a life outside of his truck.

“When you put all that together, it doesn’t leave a lot of opportunity to go out, figure it out, and make an appointment, keep that appointment,” he said.

He pointed out that he was waiting for the observation period for longer than it took him to register and get the vaccine — it was really easy for him, which he liked.

Fairweather LLC gave out the shots at Carlile. That company has staffed multiple other mass vaccination clinics like at the Alaska Airlines Center. Robin Cope has run several clinics and said this idea of making them available to people at work is a good one for the big picture of vaccination roll outs.

“I think more people will end up getting vaccinated if we can make it more available in places where there’s a workplace,” Cope said.

Correction: This story has been edited to correct the name of the company who gave out COVID-19 shots at Carlile Transportation in Anchorage from Mayweather LLC to Fairweather LLC.

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