Permanent vaccine sites opens in Frayser, but demand low during first week

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The city and Shelby County Health Department are partnering with Southwest Tennessee Community College to operate a permanent vaccine site in Frayser.

The site opened this week at the college’s Gill Center and it’ll be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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Shenita Leach was one of a few dozen who got her first COVID vaccine shot at the site.

“I was really scared to do because I heard mixed reviews but I went on and got it because my mom was like you need to get it,” she said.

But demand is very low. The city administered 24 shots Tuesday, and a little over 35 shots Thursday.

Frayser Pastor Ricky Floyd believes the city waited too long to set up a permanent site here.

“We’ve allowed time to come where some of people who were hesitant now that there are some reports came back of some of the vaccines having a few glitches, may have reignited some of the fear and maybe that’s why we see some of the numbers going down,” said Floyd who is the pastor of Pursuit of God Transformation Center.

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The city reports the 38127 zip code, which includes Frayser, is one of the least vaccinated areas in the county grappling with one of the highest COVID-19 case rates as well.

City staff said they announced this new site the same way they do the others, on social media and during the briefings.

But Floyd believes that isn’t enough either.

“One thing I’ve suggested is we need to knock on doors, we need to have them in the barbershops, the beauty shops of our community, the nail salons, and I believe they should have an announcement that they distribute to the churches,” said Floyd.

The city offered Kroger gift cards and they said like other sites, this location doesn’t require appointments either.

The Frayser site is located at the Gill Center at 3833 Mountain Terrace each Tuesday and Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.