Novel coronavirus

This scanning electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 (yellow)—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19—isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells (blue/pink) cultured in the lab.

Credit: NIAID-RML

A mass vaccination clinic is planned for Friday and Saturday at the Carlson Center in Fairbanks for people age 65 and older. It’s by appointment only through the state website covidvax.alaska.gov.

According to an announcement made by the Fairbanks North Star Borough on Tuesday, 625 COVID-19 vaccination appointments will be available. Online registration begins at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

People who need assistance making an appointment can call 907-646-3322 and leave a message.

“Someone will call you back to help schedule your appointment,” the announcement said.

The vaccination clinic is being hosted by the Interior Alaska Unified Command, a multi-agency task force created to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, along with the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services and others.

“If you know of a senior or someone eligible for vaccination, please offer them help,” the announcement reads. “The Fairbanks North Star Borough is known as being the Golden Heart City, and now is the time for us to work together to get our elders and other frontline essential workers vaccinated. This two-day clinic aims to get the first dose of the vaccine out quickly and efficiently. It is imperative to provide the vaccine to those persons most at risk and vulnerable to severe illness and death.”

Seniors have died of COVID-19 at a much higher rate than younger people and are at the front of the line for the vaccine along with health care workers and nursing home residents.

Alaska’s vaccination effort started in mid-December, and about 30,000 people have had their first dose so far, according to the state of Alaska vaccine monitoring dashboard. The state has the supply for 114,800 vaccinations, with more doses expected to arrive in the coming months.

The vaccination appointments are free, according to the announcement.

The clinic on Friday and Saturday is set to take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Carlson Center is located at 2010 2nd Ave.

“Walk-in vaccinations will not be available,” the announcement states.

The vaccine being administered was made by the company Moderna and requires a second dose after 28 days. The appointment for the second dose will be scheduled upon arrival and after check-in for the first dose, according to the announcement.

The second dose will also be administered at the Carlson Center.

More vaccination clinics may be planned in the coming months, according to the announcement.

Contact staff writer Amanda Bohman at 459-7545. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMborough.

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