Fort Knox leaders reflect on growing vaccine access on post

Fort Knox leaders reflect on growing vaccine access on post

FORT KNOX, Ky. (WAVE) - As COVID-19 case numbers continue to level out across Kentucky, vaccinations are increasing, including at Fort Knox.

At the COVID-19 vaccination site on the post, over 8,000 people have been vaccinated as they continue to stress the importance of fighting the pandemic together.

The installation started vaccinations in January, initially offering shots to a limited group. It’s now open for any soldier, retired veteran, contractor, or any of their dependents in the area.

Fort Knox Chief of Preventive Medicine Dr. James Stephens said the clinic is vaccinating anywhere from a few hundred to a thousand people a day.

Stephens said across the Department of Defense, Fort Knox’s COVID case numbers are lower than the norm, and he’s hoping that helps reach herd immunity quicker — at least within their own ranks.

“We’ve all seen the people on TV saying, ‘I refuse to wear a mask. That’s my right. I don’t have to wear one.’ Well, a young soldier doesn’t get to make that decision,” he said. “They’re told to wear a mask. They’re told to stay six feet apart. They will wear a mask and they will stay six feet apart.”

Fort Knox Commanding General John Evans said the process is all about teamwork because, at the end of the day, they have to get back to business.

“Humans are social animals,” Evans said. “In the military, we tend to find ourselves together quite a bit, whether that’s in training, in the garrison environment, and certainly for our deployed soldiers that rein combat, can find themselves in very close confines. We’re working each and every day to protect ourselves.”

Signups for the COVID vaccine can be done on the Ireland Health Clinic website, even for those who do not use the site as their primary care facility.

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