Thousands vaccinated against COVID-19 at PNC Park

PITTSBURGH — The home of the Pittsburgh Pirates was converted into a vaccination clinic where 2,500 people turned out to get their COVID-19 vaccine.

“Hallelujah. I can start going out now,” Ann Heller said.

Heller is 89 and was overjoyed to get the Pfizer vaccine.

“Everyone was so nice and kind and took care of you,” she said. “One after the other. It’s really amazing what they did.”

“They’re organized. They have so many volunteers. I mean it was seamless,” said Bob Heller, Ann Heller’s son.

The vaccination clinic was specifically for high-risk patients 75 years and older. Allegheny Health Network notified eligible patients to make an appointment to get the vaccine.

“Our limitation has been the availability of the vaccine doses. As more vaccines are available, we plan on doing similar events in collaboration with the Pirates, AHN and Highmark,” said Chief Medical Officer Dr. Imran Qadeer.

Saturday’s event was a trial run of sorts. The logistics were challenging, but there were no backups and everything ran smoothly. The partnership hopes to hold larger clinics in the future.

“We are hopeful that shows our region and our state that we can put on an event like this,” said Pirates president Travis Williams.

“Give us the vaccine and we can get to literally tens of thousands of people,” said Highmark Health CEO David Holmberg.

In the meantime, Ann Heller said she’ll continue baking cookies and looks forward to her second dose.