IRVING, N.Y. (WKBW) — Wednesday marked the first pop-up vaccine clinic held at a truck stop, offering COVID-19 vaccines to truck drivers, motorists, Natives from the Allegany and Cattaraugus Territories and residents from surrounding communities.
J.C. Seneca, Owner of Native Pride Travel Plaza in Seneca's Tallchief Territory, partnered with G-Health Enterprises to make this happen.
"We have to reach a certain percentile to make sure that as a nation, we can get through this period of this pandemic, and come out on the other side better off," he said.
"We have our mobile van so figured we'd work out this partnership to help the Native American population," said Dr. Chet Fox, Chief Medical Officer for G-Health Enterprises.
Four hundred people signed up for this pop-up vaccine clinic, where they received the one-dose J&J COVID-19 vaccine.
"I'm glad that you know this was offered to people in the community, especially for the Seneca Nation residents but also in the surrounding area. I am a Seneca Nation member, but I drove here from Amherst," said Kim Dunlop.
"Indian country overall has not done really good in this pandemic. Our death rates are twice as high as the White population, almost three times as high as the Asian population," said Dean Seneca, CEO of Seneca Scientific Solutions.
J.C. Seneca said for their next pop-up clinics, they hope to have more at local truck stops, and offer vaccines to truck drivers.
"They stop, they fuel up, they get something to eat, they take some time to rest, now like with this, they're available to get a vaccination," he said.