Gov. John Carney on Tuesday shared news from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that FEMA the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Health & Human Services (HHS), Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA), Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) and Dover International Speedway (DIS) have partnered to open a drive-through COVID-19 vaccination site for six days beginning Saturday, Feb. 20.
FEMA will provide resources and federal staffing support, as well as operational support at the site.
“We’re committed to vaccinating as many Delawareans as possible, as quickly and equitably as possible,” said Carney. “This will help us deliver critical second doses of a life-saving vaccine to thousands of Delawareans. Thank you to FEMA, Dover International Speedway and all of our partners in this important effort.”
“FEMA is grateful for the outpouring of support and hard work from our partners in Delaware, and we are excited about the innovative ways we are working together to safely vaccinate Delaware residents,” said Janice Barlow, acting regional administrator, FEMA Region 3. “This vaccination site, the first of its kind in Region 3, plays a critical role in protecting Delawareans against a virus that is relentless and ever-evolving — time is of the essence.”
Recognizing that the COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global emergency, FEMA sought early on to ensure existing partnerships with private sector and others, help facilitate this vaccine mission, officials noted.
“Dover International Speedway is proud to host this vaccination site and is grateful to all the agencies that came together so quickly to make this possible for our community,” said Mike Tatoian, Dover International Speedway president. “Our central location and ability to host thousands of people and vehicles with efficiency has made the Speedway, as well as our dedicated staff, a critical ally for health officials and charities throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. From hosting monthly food donation events and offering tests to first-responders to this vaccination site, we will continue to help our community recover from the COVID-19 pandemic however possible.”
The State of Delaware requested federal assistance to establish a vaccination site that would be able to provide the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to up to 3,000 Delawareans a day for six days.
The second-dose appointments will only be available for those who received a first-dose from the Division of Public Health at:
- Dover Division of Motor Vehicles on Jan. 16-18;
- Salesianum School in Wilmington on Jan. 18;
- Delaware City Division of Motor Vehicles on Jan. 22-24; or
- Georgetown Division of Motor Vehicles on Jan. 23-24.
Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines will be provided to those that have received their first dose at those locations.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with DEMA, FEMA and the Dover International Speedway to provide second doses to those DPH vaccinated at our large DMV events in January,” said Delaware Division of Public Health Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “Organizing a multi-day event like this takes a significant amount of resources, and we appreciate the work of not only our staff, but all involved to ensure that these Delawareans are able to be fully vaccinated.”
The second-dose appointments for the FEMA vaccination clinic will open on Wednesday, Feb. 17, at 11 a.m. at de.gov/fema. Appointments will be made with a simplified scheduling system created by the Division of Public Health and not through the CDC VAMS system that some first-dose recipients may have used to make appointments for the Georgetown and Delaware City events in January.
Those without internet access may call DPH at 1-833-643-1715 but should not call until after 11 a.m. on Wednesday, as no appointments will be available until then — but wait time may be lengthy based on call volume, and online registration is urged.
To make an appointment for the Dover Speedway clinic, an individual will have to indicate the location and date of the DPH first-dose event they attended. Individuals will have an option to create an appointment for someone else after they create their own, and will be able to have a single email tied to multiple appointments. Everyone who arrives to be vaccinated must have an appointment.
Vaccinations will occur between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. each day, scheduled in 15-minute increments. Initially, DPH will initially schedule appointments for the first five days (Feb. 20-24) and will open the sixth day as needed.
Visitors can access the vaccination site via Dover International Speedway’s Leipsic Road entrance. To reduce waiting, those with appointments will be urged not to show up more than an hour early. Just in case, those arriving at the site need to ensure:
- That they enter the Speedway grounds via 1000 Leipsic Road, not the main entrance from Route 13.
- That their vehicle has a full tank of gas.
- That they have personal identification (a driver’s licenses or photo ID).
- That they have proof of first COVID-19 vaccination (vaccination card).
- That they have confirmation of their appointment.
- That they have snacks to enjoy while waiting in line.
Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) Director A.J. Schall said, “We are lucky to be able to leverage partnerships to provide the needed second doses next week. The surge flexibility that FEMA offers allows other partners to continue with first doses and advanced planning. This event would not be possible without Dover International Speedway, Kent County EMS, St. Francis Hospital EMS, Delaware Department of Transportation (DELDOT), law enforcement and FEMA. Partnerships and flexibility will get us through this pandemic.”
FEMA will have socially-distanced staff on site to ensure prompt service is available to all and that proper COVID-19 protocol is adhered to, officials said.
“FEMA remains committed to helping Americans during this time and we will continue to work with our partners to stop the spread of this disease,” said Barlow.