Van company partners with Colorado hospital to create custom vaccine van
DURANGO, C.O.—Taylor Ripp, owner of San Juan Vans in Bayfield, Colorado, specializes in custom camper van conversions. In January, Animas Surgical Hospital in Durango reached out to him with a special project.
“They wanted to build a mobile vaccine clinic out of a Mercedes Sprinter van, and they reached out to us, and within a couple of weeks we started the project," said Ripp.
It took them about three months to get the van fully equipped and ready to go.
“So they have two refrigerators that can house the vaccine, and we built a power system that has a lot of redundancies to make sure that the refrigerators never lose power," Ripp added.
The mobile vaccine clinic is traveling to local businesses to vaccinate employees in La Plata County. Once it’s scheduled, the van will roll on site with vaccines and medical staff.
“For some it would be really easy to show up to a clinic and schedule a time, but for others, because of their work schedule or home life, it can be harder for them to find a schedule. We started working at the end of last year and the beginning of this year to determine how we can reach more people who are having trouble getting scheduled. We knew that a mobile clinic would allow for more people to have access to a vaccine," said Joe Theine, CEO of Animas Surgical Hospital.
Several businesses across the county have already partnered with the hospital to get their employees vaccinated through this mobile clinic, and several others are scheduled in the next upcoming weeks.
It’s at no cost, and if the vaccine requires two doses, the van will return when the next one is due.
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