CARY, N.C. (WNCN) — According to North Carolina health officials, more than 3,000 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 across the state, and more than 500 people have died from the virus this month alone.
On Saturday Wake County health officials teamed up with Cary First Christian Church to fight back against those numbers through a COVID-19 testing and vaccine clinic.
“I have suffered loss due to COVID and we don’t want that to happen to other members of our community. We really want to do our part in making sure that we spread awareness about vaccine protection and get people vaccinated,” said Cary First Christian Church senior pastor Mycal Brickhouse.
One senior Apex High School football player received his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine at the clinic Saturday.
“I heard the news that Wake County is going to start testing unvaccinated players before games, so I said it’s time to go ahead and get the vaccine that way we don’t have to get tested, we don’t have the chance of getting shut down and we get to play this season. It would mean a lot to play one last full season with my brothers,” Apex High School football player Adam Sulaiman said.
Others who were already vaccinated but immunocompromised, stopped by to receive a booster shot.
“I don’t want to pass it to my family, friends, I have a 90-year-old mother so I have to be safe,” Cary resident Roberta Walden said.
“With the variant that’s going around now we have to be cognizant of what we’re doing around other people so I just want to stay safe and keep other people safe,” Cary resident Arthur Walden said.
Health officials say events like Saturday’s clinic are helping, as the state’s vaccination rate increased slightly with 54 percent of the population receiving at least one dose so far.
Church leaders say they want to keep that momentum going and raise the vaccination rate even more. They plan to hold another vaccine and testing clinic in September.