The Bryce Jordan Center COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Experience

The Department of Health and Pennsylvania’s Emergency Management Agency began hosting a COVID-19 vaccine clinic inside the Bryce Jordan Center last Friday in an effort to help vaccinate eligible Pennsylvanians.

These clinics have opened as the state’s vaccine eligibility requirements have expanded continuously to include more residents. By April 19, all Pennsylvania adults will be eligible to book their vaccinations.

But when it’s time for your appointment, what’s the BJC’s process like?

You’ll first need to go through the main entrance of the arena, where you’ll get your temperature checked and show a form of photo identification to check in for your appointment.

After that, you’ll need to go to the concourse of the Bryce Jordan Center, where you’ll meet someone who will point you in the direction of a table that’s open. You’ll then sit down, verify your name and birth date, and get asked if you’ve had any reactions to any other vaccines. Finally, you get to pick which arm you’d like the shot in.

Then comes the moment of truth: the vaccine itself, which is the one-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. The needle is in your arm for about two seconds, and that’s all there is to it. You then hand the proof of vaccination card to the person collecting them, and they’ll trade you a sticky note that notes when you’re able to leave the arena.

Like most vaccines, you’re asked to wait between 15 and 30 minutes after you receive your dose in case any adverse reactions occur immediately following the shot.

Over that period, you’ll sit at a set of chairs past the vaccination tables. Once the 15 minutes are up, you’re free to walk up to the table at the front of the array of chairs to trade in the sticky note for your vaccination card. Finally, you’re free to head out through Gate B.

As for side effects from the vaccine, my arm thumped for a couple of minutes immediately after the shot. I was fine until nearly 12 hours after the shot when I started to experience some fatigue, headaches, and muscle pain in my legs.

Taking ibuprofen and staying hydrated are some helpful keys to mitigating the severity of the side effects. Resting after receiving the vaccine may not be a bad idea, either. While all these side effects don’t sound too great, they’re only temporary.

All in all, the clinic at the arena runs smoothly for 600 patients per day. The BJC’s daily vaccine capacity is expected to expand to include more patients as Pennsylvania continues to increase the number of people eligible for vaccination.

When it’s your turn, you can make an appointment by visiting PEMA’s website or by calling 1-(844)-545-3450.

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About the Author

Michael Tauriello

Michael graduated with a Bachelor of Science in industrial engineering in May 2022. He served as a photographer, social media editor, and visual editor over the course of seven semesters. If you want to know what he's up to these days, shoot him an email at [email protected] or take a look at @michaelt._ on Instagram.

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