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WeGo to provide $1 rides to select COVID-19 vaccination locations
12152020 WEGO 2.jpg
Hall Area Transit launched its new WeGo vanpool service Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. Passengers can book a trip using the free WeGo app much like Uber and Lyft. - photo by Scott Rogers

The city of Gainesville’s vanpool service, WeGo, has only been in operation for two months, but it could make a major difference for residents in need of the COVID-19 vaccine.

From Monday, Feb. 8 until March 31, the city is offering WeGo rides to vaccine appointments at a reduced rate of $1 per ride to eight vaccination centers throughout the city. The service normally operates at $3 per ride.

Gainesville-Hall County Community Service Center Director Phillippa Moss said she believes the service can be a “game-changer” for a community that has been hit especially hard by the ongoing pandemic.

In some rural areas across the country, people have found COVID-19 vaccinations inaccessible due to long commutes between vaccination centers or limited to no transportation options.

“We are a resource-rich community, and we did not want transportation to be a barrier for people getting the vaccine,” Moss told the Times. “When our staff and I noticed the uptick in cases in our country, we knew we needed to use our resources like WeGo to make a difference during this pandemic.”

WeGo operates a 10-12 person fleet from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and riders must download the app to schedule a pick-up time and destination. 

In Georgia, vaccines are currently only available to residents who are 65 and older, healthcare workers, residents, and staff of long-term facilities, law enforcement and first responders. 

Dave Palmer, a spokesman for District 2 public health, said this week that vaccination appointments scheduled at the Hall County Health Department will be moved to the Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center from Feb. 8 onwards.

Moss said that public transportation models such as WeGo are not only designed to meet the evolving needs of its patrons but also to serve as a reliable tool in times of crisis. 

“I’m very much aware of the impact that COVID-19 has had on the Gainesville-Hall County community and its life-or-death issue,” said Moss. “For us, it’s important to use services like public transportation to ensure the health and safety of our community.”

Northeast Georgia Medical Center

Northeast Georgia Physicians Group, 3137 Frontage Road, Gainesville

• NGHS.com/covid-19/vaccine-registration
• Appointments required
• 770-219-9000
• More information: NGHS.com/covid-19/vaccine-updates

Hall County Health Department

Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center, 1855 Calvary Church Road, Gainesville

• COVID-19 Vaccination Request form: http://phdistrict2.org/
• Appointments required
• 888-426-5073 or 770-531-5692
• Basic info about the COVID-19 vaccine: DPH.georgia.gov/covid-vaccine

Longstreet Clinic

725 Jesse Jewell Parkway, Suite 180 (Entrance A), Gainesville

LongstreetClinic.com/latest-information-about-covid-19-vaccination

• Appointments required
• 770-718-1122

MedLink Georgia 

520 Jesse Jewell Parkway, Gainesville

• Appointments required
• 770-287-0290 or 706-521-3113
• Note: Wait list for Gainesville-Hall County, but available in other counties

Kroger 

(470) 252-3182, 1931 Jesse Jewell Parkway, Gainesville

Riverside Pharmacy 
770-532-6253, 935 Green St. NE, Gainesville
Lawrence Pharmacy
 770-532-0786, 631 Broad St., Gainesville
McElveen’s Pharmacy
770-534-7675, 1210 Thompson Bridge Road, Gainesville

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