Five people showed up at the Summit County Health Center in Kamas on Saturday to protest COVID-19 vaccinations and discourage patients from following through with their appointments.
Summit County Sheriff's Lt. Andrew Wright said a Summit County Health Department employee notified the office of the protest.
“The group was allegedly approaching people who were there to receive the COVID vaccine, and these anti-vaxxers were attempting to dissuade the residents from getting the vaccine,” he said. “When our deputy arrived, he approached the group of five individuals who were in front of the health department office. They told the deputy that they were there to get information. When the deputy asked them what kind of information they were after, they said they wanted to know why anyone would get the vaccine."
The deputy on the scene told the demonstrators they could not interfere with patients.
“One of the females did proceed to tell the deputy that they were doing the health department a favor, due to the fact that the vaccine was not approved by the FDA,” Wright said. “Our deputy told these individuals they were not allowed to physically restrict people from receiving the vaccine. And it sounds like they were, you know, compliant and understood that they couldn't prevent people from getting the vaccine. “
Though vaccinations with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine were paused for a time due to reports of rare side effects among female patients, the CDC has since recommended that the vaccine resume being administered.
Wright said it was the first time deputies have had to respond to an anti-vaccine protest.
“It was reported that two of the females from the group had followed the patron into the waiting area and was being somewhat pushy with her, as far as getting the vaccine, but there was no other further action taken after that,” he said.
The Summit County Health Department is providing COVID-19 vaccinations at each of the county's three locations in Coalville, Park City and Kamas. Call 435-333-1500 to make an appointment.