ST. LOUIS — "Today we hit 17,000 St. Louisans that we have vaccinated, and we're feeling pretty excited about that," said Deanna Frazier, a spokesperson for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
FEMA officials are pumped after vaccinating that many people at the federal agency's mass clinic at The Dome at America's Center in downtown St. Louis.
"We are hoping those numbers are going to continue," said Frazier on Wednesday.
Officials had high hopes about the mega clinic.
Their goal: vaccinate about 3,000 people a day with the Pfizer vaccine at its eight-week stint at the Dome near Cole and Broadway.
However, two weeks into their fight against COVID-19, they still have more shots than people.
"Right now, we're seeing about 1,100 people a day," Frazier said.
On Tuesday, only 387 people showed up.
Frazier admits the numbers are disappointing, but not discouraging.
"Our focus is not on the numbers. Our focus is on the individual, making sure that they have the vaccine. We're passionate about getting shots in arms," Frazier said.
"I got the Pfizer shot, first time," said Robert Johnson.
Johnson was thrilled to get his first dose of the vaccine at the Dome site.
"No side effects. It feels good and I'm coming back in two weeks," said Johnson.
Anyone who wants the vaccine can get it at the FEMA clinic without an appointment.
Currently, 75% of those rolling up their sleeves here are walk-ins.
So, why aren't more people trekking through the Dome's doors and getting a vaccine? Frazier thinks it has a lot to do with the fact that people now have more options.
"St. Louisans have the opportunity to get their vaccine in a number of different clinics and vaccination centers around the city."
That's a choice FEMA says will not deter its 250-member team as it keeps fighting against COVID.
"We're slated to be here at the Dome until June 1, and I don't see that changing," Frazier said.
COVID-19 vaccinations are available at the Dome seven days a week from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m.
People are still encouraged to register on the state's vaccine navigator, but walk-ins are more than welcome.