PORTLAND, Ore — Kaiser Permanente will be the first hospital system to launch the mass vaccination effort at the Oregon Convention Center.
It begins Wednesday, Jan. 20, and runs from noon until 6 p.m. Kaiser expects to vaccinate 1,490 people. Vaccinations at the site will be invite only and all reservations are taken.
If you are eligible for phase 1A, which includes health care workers and those in long-term care facilities, you can sign up on the Kaiser website whether you are a member or not.
Kaiser warns says that may change in the coming days as it works with other local health systems.
The collaboration will create a special site for the Portland metro area to sign up for vaccinations.
Parking at the convention center will be free for those getting shots. The vaccinations are also free.
After Wednesday, the vaccination effort at the convention center will shut down until Saturday, when it will run from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
A spokesman said the schedule is driven by the supply of vaccine.
Multnomah County Public Health Officer Jennifer Vines said it is part of a huge undertaking to protect everyone from COVID-19.
“It is absolutely historic. People use the word unprecedented. I think even that word doesn’t quite cover it. Its monumental,” Dr. Vines said.
She added that public health does not have nearly enough people to tackle something like the mass vaccination event.
“It is amazing to know our health system and hospital partners can come together and set something up for that kind of throughout, because that is what it's going to take to get people vaccinated over the next several months,” said Dr. Vines.
One of the logistical challenges is the electronic health record created when each person gets a shot.
The four hospital groups use different types of records, but are now creating just one that will work with all of the hospital groups.