AAPHC CEO Shelley Spires

ALBANY — Albany Area Primary Health Care officially opened its new COVID-19 Vaccination Center late last week. The vaccination center will give AAPHC the ability to vaccinate upwards of 500 community members a day.

“We are so appreciative of Phoebe Putney Health System for giving us this space in their Phoebe East building,” Shelley Spires, the chief executive officer of AAPHC, said. “Whenever we can partner together, as one medical community all working together, we can best serve our residents across southwest Georgia.”

The new mass vaccination center is located at 2410 Sylvester Road in Albany. The facility is available by phone at (229) 338-7589.

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The state of Georgia is currently in Phase 1A with vaccinations, which means AAPHC is vaccinating health care workers, first responders and those community members who are 65 years of age and older. Those eligible under Phase 1A can schedule a vaccine appointment via AAPHC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline at (229) 338-7589.

AAPHC is one of only three organizations in southwest Georgia that has the COVID-19 vaccine available.

“AAPHC, along with Phoebe and the Department of Public Health, is proud to work together to ensure we’re vaccinating as many of our community members as possible,” Spires said.

As AAPHC opens its new vaccination center, it also is transitioning its previous vaccination sites back into medical offices. AAPHC’s northwest Albany and south Albany medical offices will no longer serve as vaccination sites for the organization. Instead, the AAPHC COVID-19 Vaccination Center will be the primary site for all vaccinations for the organization. This includes all community members who will have an upcoming second dose of the vaccine.

“We made this change to better serve our patients and our community members,” Spires said. “As we expanded vaccinations to serve all eligible community members in Phase 1A, we immediately recognized that we needed a much larger space to serve more residents each day. Our medical offices just aren’t large enough to accommodate up to 500 community members a day.”

The new space, which is located within the Phoebe East building in east Albany, allows for improved social distancing, easier registration processes, eight vaccination stations and a larger observation area.

“By having the eight vaccination stations, and the ability to add even more if needed, we’re able to get our community members vaccinated much faster and reduce their wait times,” Spires said.

AAPHC remains committed to vaccinating as many southwest Georgia residents as possible.

“We have waited so long for a way to fight back and stop this virus,” Dr. Edward Vance, AAPHC’s chief medical officer, said. “These vaccines are the way to help us stop transmission of the virus and return to our ‘pre-COVID’ lives. We can only do that, get back to our normal lives, if all Americans get the COVID-19 vaccine.

“Please schedule your COVID-19 vaccine appointment today. We can do this — battle back against COVID — if we all get vaccinated as soon as possible.”

For full details on the AAPHC COVID-19 Vaccination Center, visit www.aaphc.org/coronavirus]www.aaphc.org/coronavirus.

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