JESSUP, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — A local barber’s mission to get more people their COVID-19 vaccines has grown beyond expectations.
Three Saints Barber Shop in Jessup wasn’t providing haircuts or shaves Thursday morning. Instead, they were working to open up accessibility for the local residents who have been feeling the strain of trying to book a vaccine appointment.
Back in March, Michael McAndrew partnered with a local Rite Aid to hold a COVID-19 vaccine in his shop. On Thursday, his efforts paid off, allowing local residents like James Tucker and his mother to avoid difficult trips to different counties to get their first vaccine doses.
“This is a couple of months now,” Archbald resident Tucker said. “I’ve been waiting to get a hold of our party opportunity for Mama. She’s 87 years old, you know.”
The wait has been agonizing for Taylor Bonacci, of Jessup, who has several conditions that would have qualified her for Phase 1A of the vaccine rollout. She finally confirmed an appointment not at a clinic but at the barber shop.
“We actually applied to get it somewhere before here but they were taking so long to reply back,” Bonacci said.
The praise from those able to get shots locally wasn’t something the barber shop owner was looking for.
“To be able to help out if you have access to something that people need,” said McAndrew. “Why wouldn’t you?”
But for people like Dunmore resident Paul Tormbetta and the nearly 200 others slated for appointments on Thursday, the help was huge.
“I’m only like 15 minutes away, you know, where I have to take my fiancé all the way down to Pittston Township. It’s like right around the corner,” he said.
Plus, like most things over the last 12 months and change, it’s just a bit different.
“A lot more because most vaccines you get in a doctor’s office,” said Bonacci. “No, It’s more unique,”
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