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Atlanta Area Mobile COVID-19 Unit Helps Vaccinate Construction Site Crews

Thu August 26, 2021 - Southeast Edition
FOX 5 Atlanta


Crews from JE Dunn, a company that is overseeing the construction of the new health sciences research building on Emory University's campus, took advantage of a mobile COVID-19 vaccination unit.
Crews from JE Dunn, a company that is overseeing the construction of the new health sciences research building on Emory University's campus, took advantage of a mobile COVID-19 vaccination unit.

A mobile COVID-19 vaccination unit in DeKalb County, Ga., was established this summer to visit businesses, work sites, churches or anywhere else that groups of people wanted to get the shots.

A metro Atlanta construction company was among those utilizing the mobile service earlier in August, in the process making it easier for its employees to get the vaccine.

Christopher Rampton is the senior project manager with JE Dunn, a company that is overseeing the construction of the new health sciences research building on Emory University's campus. He recounted the service as a resounding success in an interview with FOX 5 Atlanta.

Rampton said he and others in the company want to do everything they can to create a safe and healthy work environment for their employees.

"With the arrival of the Delta variant, and then continuously looking for ways to improve the safety of the construction environment, we were brainstorming and Googling and came across the DeKalb County Board of Health mobile vaccine site," Rampton noted to the TV station.

Shortly thereafter, Rampton requested a unit be brought out to the work site. Just a few weeks after that, DeKalb County Health staff arrived at the Emory building site with the vaccines.

A total of 86 people decided to take advantage of the service.

Among them was Chris Hughes, who has worked in construction for more than two decades.

"There's a lot of us that work construction that work a lot of hours – 60, 70 hours a week," he explained.

Hughes said that prior to DeKalb County's mobile unit showing up at the site, he had no plans to get his COVID-19 shot, due to a demanding schedule and his inclination toward not getting vaccines.

But, he added, the mobile unit changed his mind.

"If I'm sick and I'm in the hospital, I can't provide for my family. We didn't want the job site to get shut down either," Hughes remarked to FOX 5 Atlanta.

Factors such as language barriers or distrust of vaccines also can play a role in keeping people from getting the vaccine.

However, Rampton said he is glad he was able to help some members of the JE Dunn crew overcome at least one barrier keeping them from getting the shot.

"I certainly think that we learned a lesson here that convenience is certainly a factor there," he explained. "These men and women building this building are working long hours, some of them six to seven days a week. So, I think bringing the vaccine to them increases the turnout for sure."

FOX 5 Atlanta reported that the mobile unit will be back in a few weeks to give people their second doses.

Rampton said other construction companies have shown interest in getting the mobile vaccine unit out to their sites after hearing about it.

To learn more about how to request a mobile vaccine, visit the Dekalb County Board of Health website at www.dekalbhealth.net/mobile-covid-19-vaccination-clinic/#hostclinic.




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