“Hello, step up to the blue circle on the floor. I need you to do three things before going into the room for vaccination. First, take off your jacket. Second, roll up your sleeve. Third, take all of your belongings into the vaccination station where you will receive your COVID shot – and don’t forget your CDC card!”

That was my script as a Virginia Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteer at the Arlington County COVID Vaccination Clinic last week. The day started early with a 30-minute briefing by the Point of Dispensing (POD) leaders. Promptly at 9:00, everyone was in their assigned location as we started with the first set of Group 1a appointments for the day.

The POD was Arlington County employees collaborating with Arlington MRC volunteers and representatives from the Arlington County Police Department. Our goal was to administer 150 vaccinations for the day. The process was efficient and well managed from the steps of initial temperature screening at the door, registration, ID validation, staging or “flow” before entry into the vaccination station, and finally, the observation area. The observation area is a 15-30 minute post-vaccination waiting room in the event anyone had any adverse reactions to the vaccine.

By 5:00 PM, we met the mission – 150 vaccinations in healthcare professionals’ arms. It was the end of a long week, but just the beginning of an immunization program to help the community get back to some sense of normalcy that we all miss. To learn more about volunteering with the Arlington MRC, check out the website at https://health.arlingtonva.us/medical-reserve-corps/. The plan for Arlington County’s COVID Vaccine Plan is available at https://www.arlingtonva.us/covid-19/vaccines/.


On February 2, 2021 Arlington County published a YouTube video: COVID-19 Vaccinations: Inside an Arlington County Public Health Clinic. Check it out at https://youtu.be/atlQ6-iiMnw

Let me know about your COVID vaccination experience, and remember to “spread the word, not the virus”! Mask up and stay safe.

2 responses to “MRC Is Here”

  1. cherylspeckgmailcom Avatar

    Thank you, Peggy, for working as a volunteer for the COVID -19 vaccine. You have provided hope to so many every time you repeat those check-in instructions! I live in Kansas and am not-so-patiently waiting for phase 2 of the vaccine rollout which will allow me to get the first dose. My dad died from Covid on November 10, 2020. I feel like he was so close to getting the vaccine. I started blogging in November about my first year of retirement. It’s been quite the ride!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Peggy McShane Avatar

      Thanks for the post. Best to you and stay safe. Let us know about the experience once you get the vaccination. It will be interesting to know how each state manages the process.


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