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Hundreds of high-risk veterans in Wichita get COVID vaccine

Coronavirus in Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Robert Dole VA Medical Center has vaccinated hundreds of veterans in Wichita since getting access to the COVID-19 vaccine.

“They’re a population that sees this as an opportunity to serve their community by doing their duty and getting their vaccine,” said Victoria Audley, Dole VA disease prevention manager.

She said since the medical center started offering the vaccine to veterans, the staff has received thousands of calls from veterans to book appointments to get the vaccine.

“The motivation for our veterans besides staying healthy is the effect they have on their community,” said Audley. “One of the veterans told me, ‘I am 85, and I want to protect my wife, and he said ‘all my friends are old, and he said I want to see my friends.'”

One Air Force veteran said the military prepared him for moments like this, so not getting the vaccine never crossed his mind.

“Since being in the military you got flu shots, nothing gave me any pause to get this vaccine,” said Eddie Wells, Air Force veteran.

Wells said it’s important for everyone to do their part in flattening the curve.

“I want to be part of the solution and number two, I want to protect myself and my family,” said Wells. “Do your own research and think about others before yourself. If you take that approach, I think as Americans we can stem the tide of this pandemic.”

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