The Missouri Rural Health Association (MRHA) with support of the National Rural Health Association (NRHA), is supporting COVID-19 vaccination transportation in Benton, Buchanan, Cedar, Crawford, Dent, Henry, Hickory, Howell, Johnson, Lafayette, Pettis, Phelps, St Clair, and Vernon Counties. No-cost transportation to COVID-19 vaccination appointments begins August 9, 2021. No-cost transportation includes youth 12 years and older with a parent or guardian present.
COVID-19 cases are rising. The new Delta variant, predicted to become the dominant variant worldwide, was first identified in Missouri in April of this year. The primary target for the Delta variant and other variants is unvaccinated individuals.
According to a news release issued by the Department of Health and Senior Services on July 2, 2021, mRNA vaccines developed for COVID-19 are nearly 90% effective against symptomatic disease and 96% effective against hospitalization. Some reports indicate the Delta variant’s viral load is 1000-times higher than other variants making it substantially more transmissible than in prior months. It is slated to be 60% more transmissible than the Alpha variant that was first discovered in the U.K. See local statistics (updated daily).
“The Delta variant is also impacting young people in a way that previous variants have not,” said DHSS Acting Director Robert Knodell. “It is wrong to think that only the elderly and those with compromised immune systems need the vaccination. The virus has changed since the early days of the pandemic.”
To safeguard and improve the health of rural Missourians, MRHA aims to eliminate the transportation barrier for COVID vaccinations. Using MRHA volunteer drivers and the HealthTran scheduling platform, rides can be scheduled 3 to 20 days in advance. Individuals living in the same household may be transported together.
How to Schedule a Ride
To find local vaccination sites and arrange an appointment explore www.vaccines.gov/search/
- Select vaccines of choice.
- Enter ZIP Code (25 miles or less Radius) and click “Search for Vaccines”.
- Select a location close to you using the list and map feature.
- Call to set an appointment date and time. Remember to schedule three or more working days in advance. This improves ride availability. Call 573-469-9117 to schedule a ride.
- A mobility coordinator will be available Monday through Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Friday, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- Leave a voice message with a name, contact number, appointment date, time, and location. A mobility manager will call immediately to confirm your trip details.
- Rides are not guaranteed and are based on driver availability. If possible, schedule your ride five or more days in advance.
If you live outside the listed counties above, find free and low-cost transportation options.
For more information, contact Mary Gordon at Mary@morha.org, or call 573.616.2740.
Learn more about MRHA.