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Appointments still open as 740,000 more Washingtonians become eligible for COVID-19 vaccines

Vaccination sites still had open appointments Wednesday, but the influx of newly eligible people could put the state back in a tough spot with vaccine availability.

SEATTLE — About 740,000 people became eligible for COVID-19 vaccines Wednesday as Washington state moved into Phase 1B Tier 2, and some vaccine sites still have open appointments. 

Approximately 1,200 people got the shot Wednesday at Lumen Field Event Center in Seattle, the largest civilian-led mass vaccination site in the country.

“This, to me, really does inspire me to know that hope is on the way, that the light is at the end of the tunnel and Seattle’s about to be on the path to recovery,” said Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan.

Hazel Tabile brought her son, Joey, to a city-run vaccination site in West Seattle. “We were waiting. We were waiting for a long time,” she said.

Joey has autism and is predominately non-verbal. Tabile said she battled for months to make sure Joey is protected from the virus.

“It’s really difficult, but he’s been really good about washing his hands and getting and putting his mask on, so this is just another layer,” she said.

Joey is one of the people now eligible, as people with disabilities are listed in Phase 1B Tier 2. And while many appointments are still open, the influx could put the state back in a tough spot with vaccine availability.

Durkan is confident it will not last long.

“I think right now, we still are in a supply problem. We have more people that want the vaccine than vaccine. I think in not too distant a future we’ll be talking about the other problem; how do we get more people to take the vaccine?” she said.

Duran said she was in contact with the White House this week in talks about getting more vaccine supply for the City of Seattle.

RELATED: Mass COVID-19 vaccine clinic opens at Seattle’s Lumen Field Event Center

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