Driving the Kansas Turnpike? You can now stop for a free COVID vaccine and test

Local News

TOPEKA (KSNT) – You can now get vaccinated and tested for COVID while driving across Kansas.

The state’s health department is partnering with Blue Cross Blue Shield Kansas and The Kansas Turnpike Authority to offer vaccine and testing clinics along the Kansas Turnpike.

KDHE Public Health Nurse Specialist Rebecca Adamson says their goal in offering these free vaccine and testing clinics is to make both as easy and convenient as possible for people.

“We have a lot of people that work on these highways, truck drivers and things like that so we’re hoping to catch those folks too,” Adamson said.

The clinics will be open during certain times at the service areas in Topeka, Lawrence, and Cassoday.

Any Kansan or out-of-state traveler like Autumn Isom can get a shot or be tested in just a few minutes after answering some questions and showing their I.D.

“The more available it is for people, the more likely they are to do it,” Isom said.

Isom is pregnant and said she’s not getting the vaccine until after she gives birth, but agrees with local health officials that making the vaccine more accessible is a good idea.

“I’m all for people getting vaccinated if it’s what makes them feel safer. The studies are showing that it’s good to do and it’s the right thing to do,” Isom said.

According to the CDC, out of the 164,000,000 people in the U.S. who are fully vaccinated, a little over 7,500 fully vaccinated people were hospitalized or died.

That’s .0046 percent of fully vaccinated people, or breakthrough cases, getting really sick or dying.

As of Thursday night, 55 percent of those eligible in Kansas have received at least one shot and 46 percent are fully vaccinated.

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