LITTLE ROCK, AR (STL.News) Governor Asa Hutchinson is requesting all pharmacies, hospitals and other providers who are in the Coronavirus Vaccine program to schedule extra hours this weekend in order to make up for the lost time resulting from the snow and extreme temperatures from this last week.

“It is critical to get our vaccines out as quickly as possible, and we have to catch up on the missed appointments and slow vaccine distribution over the last week,” Governor Hutchinson said.  “We need to move to other categories of 1-B, and the sooner we get more of our 70+ vaccinated then the sooner we will be able to add more Arkansans to the eligible list.  If you are a pharmacy with available vaccines, then I am asking you to schedule as many appointments as possible this weekend.  If you are in an eligible category, then please make your appointment.”

“These vaccines are very effective against COVID-19,” Dr. Jose Romero, Secretary of the Department of Health said.  “The faster we can all get vaccinated, the faster we can protect our population and hold off the variant strains that are circulating around the world and in the U.S. Please join us in making up your appointment this weekend if you had to delay it because of the weather.”

“Pharmacists remain on the front lines of the COVID-19 health care response and have been making huge strides in ending this crippling pandemic through their vaccination efforts,” Arkansas Pharmacists Association CEO John Vinson said.  “We agree with the governor’s request for all COVID-19 vaccinating pharmacies to ramp up appointments this week, and we will continue to assist them as they push the state forward toward more eligible Phase 1-B groups in the near future.  Through survey data, our network of community pharmacies are reporting to the Arkansas Pharmacists Association that they have adequate capacity to double or triple their appointment slots over the next two weeks to reschedule appointments from this week, to schedule new appointments for the future and to respond to the increase in the vaccine supply for Arkansas.”

You can find vaccination locations throughout the state HERE.