I’ve gotten a couple of e-mails and a phone call regarding my reporting that “no one was turned away” at Saturday’s swine flu vaccination clinic at Emerald Ridge High School in Puyallup.
The concerned readers said they were at the end of the line when a security officer told them early in the day there wouldn’t be enough vaccine for everyone. So they left.
That announcement was wrong and not authorized by the health department, a health department supervisor told me Saturday. Health department workers later went out to tell people there would indeed be enough vaccine.
It sounds like some of our readers had left by then.
I talked to people in line before and after the false announcement, and most said that only a few people decided to leave after they heard there wouldn’t be enough vaccine. That seemed the case to me, as the line had shrunk very little since the clinic opened.
In any case, I think it is important to clarify that when the health department said late Saturday they didn’t have to deny anyone a vaccine, they were referring to the fact that they had vaccines left over and were able to vaccinate all the children who got through the line.
The early announcement was an unfortunate miscommunication from non-health department personnel.