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Reader’s COVID question answered: Any help with long lines?

Q: Nothing has been said about getting to a vaccine site or how long a person has to “stand” in line if that person is over 70, is disabled and uses a cane, walker or wheelchair. We may have issues, but we are still of use to our community. Many of us volunteer or work part time. Do you have any answers?­ — L.E., North Las Vegas

A: Your question kind of broke our heart, L.E.

Let us just say that, of course, residents 70 and older are valuable to their communities. And, yes, some will have mobility issues.

Ease of access is going to vary from site to site. At the Encore vaccination site on the Strip, for example, parking is available close to the entrance for the vaccination clinic, and the clinic itself is near the entrance.

“We have ample seating available to patients while they wait for their appointments,” said Scott Kerbs, a spokesman for University Medical Center, which is operating the Encore site, which requires appointments.

Wait times are minimal, he said, and wheelchairs are available.

At the high-volume Cashman Center in downtown Las Vegas, some residents said they waited an hour, others closer to two hours. Members of the Nevada National Guard were observed providing wheelchairs to some of those in line.

As the county more strictly enforces the by-appointment-only policy, which we observed was lax early last week, wait times logically might be reduced.

“We also have some golf carts on site that are being used to shuttle people to and from the parking lot as needed,” said Stacey Welling, a spokeswoman for Clark County, which is operating the Cashman site.

The county is asking that people who use walkers or wheelchairs to please bring them “so they will be more comfortable during their visit to the site,” Welling said.

Residents are reporting short waiting times at Walgreens and Smith’s, which began vaccinating those 70 and older last week.

We’ve heard of no plans to coordinate rides to vaccination sites, which strikes us as a good idea. Also no word yet on getting vaccines to those unable to leave their homes.

— Submit your questions to vaccinequestions@reviewjournal.com and the Las Vegas Review-Journal will take them to health experts. We’ll keep updating as we learn more.

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