Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital and the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) are partnering to organize a large-scale COVID-19 vaccination clinic on Saturday at Halifax County High School from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The clinic is by appointment only.

Phase 1b eligible individuals are being contacted directly to schedule an appointment for their first vaccine dose. Organizers of the clinic said they cannot accommodate walk-ins or calls to schedule an appointment.

There will be a second dose clinic on April 3 for all individuals who receive their vaccine on Saturday.

“We are excited to partner with the VDH and provide this essential service to our community. It has been a challenging year and this is an opportunity to bring some much-needed relief to those we serve. Every person we vaccinate gets us one step closer to returning to a more normal state of living. I’m extremely proud of our team and applaud the effort they have put in to improving the health of our area residents,” said Brian Zwoyer, president of Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital.

“Our mission as an organization is to improve health every day. By working together with our community partners we can offer a potentially life-saving vaccine to thousands of our community members who are at high-risk for developing severe illness from COVID-19,” said Jordan Asher, chief physician executive at Sentara Healthcare.

The clinic will vaccinate people eligible for the vaccine in Phase 1b as prioritized by guidance by the Virginia Department of Health, with an emphasis on underserved minority populations for whom access may be a challenge.

“We understand the many challenges facing those in underserved communities, including access to a COVID-19 vaccine,” said Iris Lundy, director of health equity for Sentara Healthcare. “We are building trust, sharing educational resources, and getting the word out through these organizations that the vaccine is safe, and we are committed to offering the vaccine to these high-risk individuals in the appropriate phase group as supply allows.”

Several church pastors and community leaders will be sharing their vaccination experience with their organizations and through social media to promote education on vaccine safety to Black and Brown community members.

“It is important for those who may be historically skeptical of vaccines to have access to factual information through trusted relationships,” Lundy said. “Sentara Healthcare is supporting these organizations to ensure accurate safety and educational material is available to those community members.”

Sentara will continue to work in partnership with the Virginia Department of Health and local health districts to support future vaccine clinics for eligible community members. They encourage those who are eligible to receive the vaccine in Phase 1b to sign up to receive the vaccine through vaccinate.virginia.gov.

While Sentara will continue to vaccinate eligible patients and community members as vaccine supply allows, they may be able to receive the vaccine through their health department sooner than with their provider.

If community members have questions regarding the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine, or to read FAQs, visit www.sentara.com/vaccine.

The Virginia Department of Health continues to lead vaccine distribution through local health districts. Anyone interested in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is encouraged to sign up for the vaccine through their local health department if they have not already done so.

The Centers of Disease Control (CDC) also has just launched a new tool called the COVID-19 Vaccine Finder. This website shows which providers have available vaccine in stock near you.