As you drive by or drive into the parking lot of the new Kane Vax Hub at 501 N. Randall Road in Batavia, you’ll see a flashing traffic message board saying vaccinations are by appointment only and encouraging Kane County residents to make appointments at KANEVAX.ORG.
What Kane residents will not see are the hours of planning, Zoom meetings, text messages and after-hour phone calls that brought the large-scale vaccination site to Kane County.
“It’s the product of a lot of hard work and the beginning of more to come,” said Jarett Sanchez, chairman of the Kane County Public Health Committee. “But what it means to me is hope for people. It really is about hope.”
Kane County Board Madam Chairman Corinne Pierog said the facility will quickly ramp up the Kane County Health Department’s ability to get shots in arms.
“It’s the beginning.” she said. “This is the beginning of making sure we have the capacity to stop the coronavirus — to give people a hub as well as a way to make an appointment.”
Kane County residents who are eligible to get vaccinated at this time — people age 65 and older, frontline workers and people with serious health conditions — can make an appointment through the new KANEVAX.ORG website or by calling the KANEVAX phone number: 855-4-KANEVAX (855-452-6382).
Dr. Kenneth Campbell — executive assistant to the director of the Illinois Department of Public Health, and one of the dignitaries at the brief opening ceremony today (Friday, March 19, 2021) — said Pierog’s quiet tenacity was the spark that turned the suburban mass vaccination site from a concept to a reality.
“If Madam Chair can dream it, we’re here to support it,” Campbell said.
Kane County Board member Chris Kious, who represents District 23 in the northern part of Kane County, said county officials are still actively pursuing opportunities to bring additional permanent and mobile vaccination sites to communities throughout the county.
“Today is a big step forward,” he said. “(This site) represents an incredible behind-the scenes effort — and a real accomplishment. Kudos to Madam Chairman Pierog and (Health Committee Chair) Jarett Sanchez for making this happen.”
Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns, who also attended the opening ceremony, said it’s his understanding that the Kane Vax Hub would be administering 2,000 shots a day at the beginning and could have the capacity to do 6,000 vaccinations a day.
“Think of it,” he said. “In four days, we could vaccinate all of Geneva.”
Burns said March 19, 2021, is an important date, because it signals a turning point in a year-long pandemic.
“It’s is another opportunity to remind us that we’re all in this together — all from one community,” he said. “This day is heartwarming, emotional … extraordinary.”
One of the first — if not the first — person to get vaccinated Friday was Jeff Klingberg of Hampshire. Klingberg does management consulting and is diabetic, which makes him eligible as part of Phase 1B+.
“I have an elderly mother and a sister with health issues, so having everyone vaccinated really helps,” he said. “It means seeing my brother, being able to go to clients, if needed. We used to be able to go to the Kane County Cougars games — now, maybe, we’ll have a chance to do that again.”
Kane Vax Hub Contact Information
Illinois Vaccine Appointment Call Center