JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Walmart store on Lem Turner Road on Jacksonville’s Northside will be administering the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, according to a statement the company sent Thursday to News4Jax.
The statement said that as the store at 12100 Lem Turner Road transitions from the Moderna to the Pfizer vaccine, Walmart is directing patients to two nearby locations to receive their second dose of the Moderna vaccine. Those locations are the Walmart store at 6830 Normandy Blvd. and the store at 13227 City Square Drive.
The statement also said Walmart pharmacists are reaching out to patients who had their first dose at the Lem Turner Road store to schedule their appointment for the second dose of the Moderna vaccine at either the Normandy Boulevard store or the City Square Drive location.
Northside resident Jacqueline Richardson, 71, said she and other family members were put in a confusing situation when they learned they would not be able to get their second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the Walmart location on Lem Turner Road.
“I’m frustrated and I know how to use a computer, but it didn’t make sense to go through all of this,” Richardson said.
Richardson said that on Feb. 18, she and other relatives in her age group received the first dose of the Moderna vaccine. She said that after they receive their shot, they were instructed to go home and make an appointment online to receive their second dose.
“When I went online to sign up, it said no appointments available. The next day I checked, it said the same thing. I waited until Monday, and I checked, and it said the same thing,” Richardson explained.
She called the store and said she spoke with a pharmacy tech who said: “The governor had pulled the Moderna vaccine and was sending the Pfizer to them.”
She said the technician she spoke with couldn’t help her and also sounded confused about what to do.
“She said, ‘You can check with River City,’ Richardson said. “I told her I already checked there, and it’s saying the same thing online: no appointments available.”
Richardson said she contacted the health department and was directed to Florida’s vaccine website to search for Walmart locations where she could book an appointment for her second dose of the Moderna vaccine.
“So there was none available in the city of Jacksonville,” she said. “The closest one to us was in Leon County, which is Tallahassee.”
She later learned Edwards Waters College was offering the Moderna vaccine. She also learned she and her relatives would not have to make an appointment -- just show up.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned people about mixing the vaccines except for “exceptional situations” because there hasn’t been enough research on the side effects of mixing the vaccines.
Walmart’s corporate office later issued the statement to News4Jax that reads:
“The Lem Turner store will be administering the Pfizer vaccine to serve even more people within our communities.
“As the Lem Turner store transitions from the Moderna to the Pfizer vaccine, we’re directing patients to two nearby locations to receive their second Moderna doses. These locations are our Normandy store (6830 Normandy Jax) and our Airport store (13227 City Square Blvd Jax).
“Walmart pharmacists are reaching out to patients who had their first dose at Lem Turner to schedule their second Moderna vaccination appointments at one of the two stores listed above.”
Pfizer shots will be given at a pop-up vaccination event that’s taking place Thursday through Monday outside the Walmart on Lem Turner Road. Eligible patients can schedule an appointment at www.walmart.com/COVIDvaccine.