The new vaccine distribution center on Sandy Hollow road is a well-oiled machine. 

I finally was able to get my 91-year-old grandmother signed up for a COVID-19 vaccine. The sign up process was quick and easy. You can do it in minutes right on the Winnebago County Health Department's website. Seriously, it's very quick and easy.

Once you're in the system, they'll give you a list of available appointment times to select from. That's all you have to do to get registered. No long complicated forms or endless questions. Just age, address, and a few questions about your health and living situation.

The vaccine distribution center is located in the old K-Mart building on Sandy Hollow Rd on the south side of town. It was set up and is being run by the Illinois National Guard. I cannot speak highly enough to the efficiency, cleanliness, and helpfulness of the whole operation. It was very well run.

Our appointment was for 1:55PM. We got there a little early at 1:20. They let us in and she had the shot before 1:30. After that, you need to wait in an observation area for about 15 minutes and then you leave. We were out of the parking lot by 1:50. Everyone there was knowledgeable and very helpful. A personal thank you to Daniel, who helped me get my grandma back out to the car.

Afterwards, they send you an email to schedule your second dose of the vaccine and that's where I came across the first thing that confused me. When you go back to schedule the second dose, it asks you if you have a closed POD event code. It asked it the first time but even though I didn't know what it meant, I assumed that we didn't have one and just proceeded like that. I wasn't sure if now that we were in the system, we had a "closed POD." There was nothing on the website that explained what that was so I did some googling. There wasn't a lot of information about it but I did find an article back in November from WREX that explains it:

WREX - Experts say the vaccine will be distributed here in one setting, known as a POD (points of distribution). Distribution for phases 1 and 2 would be considered a "closed POD" location. Health experts say they hope this is ready by early spring in March or April.

A closed POD is for people who received their first dose in a private facility. The "closed POD event code" is used to make sure that people who get their doses from 2 different places receive the same type of vaccine.

Maybe you knew this, but I had to talk to a bunch of reasonably smart people to find an answer.

The moral of this story is that the new vaccine distribution center is running well, and should be taken advantage of if you are eligible for a shot. Stay safe out there and look out for each other.

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.

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