Hundreds Turned Away for Flu Shots in Plano

An hour before the Chase Oaks Family Center on Avenue K in Plano opened Saturday, more than 400 people were waiting outside.

Susan Gingrass got her shot weeks earlier but was here to get her grandkids vaccinated.

“You hear so much hype on the TV about people dying from the flu,” said Gingrass.  “It’s scary right now, so it’s important to get the kids vaccinated and we don’t have insurance right now so the free flu shot is definitely a big draw.”

The Collin County Medical Reserve Corps expected a crowd but not this big.

“I was very, very surprised at the number of people that came out,” said coordinator Rebecca Drekmann.

The City of Plano gave the volunteer disaster response group the vaccine to distribute over several free flu shot clinics.

This was the last one which just happened to coincide with a very busy point in the flu season in North Texas.  So why did people wait until now to get the shot? 

Chris Jessie, who showed up four hours early and was first in line told us, “Just procrastination basically.  Just working a lot of hours.”

Demand greatly outpaced supply as about a half-hour into the free flu shot clinic 800 people had shown up for 500 doses; which was all the free doses the Medical Reserve Corps had. 

Volunteers told people at the end of the line there was not enough vaccine for them.  Some left quietly.  Natasha Sublet had something to say.

“We have other people who are ahead of us calling their family members telling them to come and jump in line,” said Sublet, as she and her family headed back to their car.  “And the lines moving but we’re getting behind because other people’s family members jumped ahead of us.”

Sublet said she’ll take her kids to the doctor and pay for their flu shots.  For those who got to the clinic early enough to get vaccinated for free, a little pinch to their shoulder never felt so good.


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