New York City Expands Vaccination Availability, Vaccinates 100 Thousand in One Week

Mayor Bill de Blasio tours a mass vaccination site at NYC Health + Hospitals/ Bathgate in the Bronx on Sunday, January 10, 2021. (Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

New York City is making a concerted push to expand appointments and eligibility for coronavirus vaccinations.

As of today, those in the 1B category are eligible for vaccination. 1B includes  those above 75, and essential workers such as first responders like fire fighters and police officers, teachers and school staff, public safety workers, and public transit workers.

“To eligible New Yorkers—including healthcare heroes, people 75 and older, educators, and first responders—the vaccine is coming to a site near you,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi. “Go to the finder to make an appointment today. A vaccination will help you protect yourself, your community and your city from COVID-19.”

The city has opened several new vaccination sites, including hubs that run 24/7, and intends to open dozens more across the five boroughs. New locations to open this week include the Department of Health headquarters in Manhattan tomorrow, the Vanderbilt Clinic in Staten Island on Wednesday, and a pop-up hub in Corona, Queens on Saturday.

In the first week of January, more than 100 thousand New Yorkers were vaccinated, more than everyone who had been nominated in December. City officials intend to vaccinate 175 thousand people this week.

“This is the city that never sleeps,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio, noting that an overnight vaccination center had all the slots between midnight and 4 AM were booked. “People are immediately grabbing those opportunities.”

Vaccines are by appointment only, which the mayor said was to avoid overwhelming crowds, and to ensure only those who are in category 1A or 1B are vaccinated. Between the two categories, millions of people are eligible.

In order to book an appointment, those eligible have either the option of registering online or call 877-VAX-4NYC between the hours of 8 AM-9 PM.

City officials may have to contend that their rapid expansion of the vaccination will work too well, and the city will run out of vaccine vials.

“We are going to run out” without more supplies from the federal government, de Blasio warned.



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