By SCOTT BAUER
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The COVID-19 vaccination center at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison will be able to increase the number of doses delivered by 2,100 a week thanks to new staffing support from the federal government starting on Wednesday, Gov. Tony Evers announced.
The site will become the third in Wisconsin run by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency. It also runs a mass vaccination clinic at the Wisconsin Center in downtown Milwaukee. Another FEMA-run mass vaccination clinic opens Thursday at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s Zorn Arena.
The state has committed to supplying 7,000 doses of vaccine a week at the Madison center, which has the capacity to inoculate 1,400 people per day, the governor’s office said Tuesday. The additional 26 staff from the federal government will allow for 2,100 more doses to be administered per week, depending on supply, compared with the 5,600 weekly doses currently, Evers’ office said. The mass clinic opened in late December.
“This is one of the largest vaccination efforts our state has undertaken and it takes teamwork at every level to ensure we are getting vaccine to everyone as quickly, fairly, and safely as possible,” Evers said in a statement. “I am grateful for FEMA’s support to our state and coordinating with our local partners to help our most vulnerable populations get the protection they need so we can all move forward from this pandemic.”
Everyone age 16 and over in Wisconsin is eligible for the vaccine. Health officials have urged patience, as supply was not expected to meet demand. An interactive map showing where vaccine is available is on the state health department website.
As of Monday, 33% of people in Wisconsin had received at least one dose and 20.1% were fully inoculated, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The push to increase vaccinations comes as positive coronavirus cases have been on the rise for the past month.