The move comes after the Arizona Department of Health Services said Monday there were still 60,000 vaccine appointments available at state-run sites.
Arizonans no longer need an appointment to get vaccinated at any of the state’s seven COVID-19 vaccination sites.
The Arizona Department of Health Services said Tuesday that it was encouraging people to visit the state-run sites any time during operating hours to be vaccinated. Walk-in vaccine appointments are open to anyone 16 or older in Arizona, regardless of health insurance or immigration status.
Making an appointment is still the best way to receive a vaccine as quickly as possible, the department said in a statement Tuesday.
“The appointment numbers clearly suggest that we’ve accommodated a large share of Arizonans who are able to schedule appointments well in advance,” state public health director Dr. Cara Christ said.
The move comes as supply of the vaccine seems to have exceeded the demand. ADHS announced Monday that there were nearly 60,000 vaccine appointments still available at the state-run sites since appointments opened on Friday.
It’s a far cry from when vaccines first became available and appointments could fill up within minutes. Vaccine eligibility has since opened up to those 16 and older across the state.
As of Tuesday, 40% of the state’s population had received at least one dose of the vaccine. The state’s Black and Latino communities are being vaccinated at much lower rates than their total share of the population, although demographic data provided by the state shows at least 30% of those vaccinated where race was unspecified or unknown.
“When demand for vaccination outpaced supply, requiring appointments was absolutely necessary at state-run sites,” Christ said. “As we move into the next phase of COVID-19 vaccination, with supply meeting and even exceeding the current demand, we don’t want making an appointment to be a barrier to getting vaccinated. So please feel free to drop by.”
Where Can You Get Vaccinated?
Arizona currently operates seven vaccination sites across the state:
- Gila River Arena in Glendale
- Desert Financial Arena in Tempe
- Dexcom Regional Distribution Center in Mesa
- WestWorld in Scottsdale
- University of Arizona in Tucson
- Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff
- Yuma Civic Center in Yuma
The Pfizer vaccine is being offered at state-run sites and is available to those 16 and older. Pharmacies or healthcare centers elsewhere in Arizona may offer the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccines, which are approved for those 18 and older.
Many state-run sites currently have same-day appointments available, although locations and hours of operation will vary.
The Gila River Arena vaccination site, which is home to the Arizona Coyotes hockey team, will have blackout dates whenever the Coyotes play home games, including this Friday and Saturday, April 30-May 1, as well as Monday, May 3 and Wednesday, May 5.
Arizonans can sign up to receive a vaccine at the state-run sites by visiting https://podvaccine.azdhs.gov. Anyone who does not have access to a computer can call 1-844-542-8201 to make an appointment. Assistance is offered in both English and Spanish.
Spanish-speaking residents can also call the state’s 2-1-1 hotline, which operates 24/7 and can help individuals book a vaccine appointment. People needing assistance can dial 2-1-1 then 2-7-1 to book vaccine appointments for themselves or for a relative, friend, co-worker, or neighbor.
Information about vaccination sites across Arizona can be found at azhealth.gov/findvaccine.