More community-based vaccine sites open in NY amid battle against racial disparities

Coronavirus
coronavirus vaccine new york

Registered Nurse Shyun Lin, left, gives Roberto Fisher, 72, the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination site in the William Reid Apartments in Brooklyn on Jan. 23, 2021.

NEW YORK CITY — New York launched more community-based, pop-up COVID-19 vaccination sites this week, as the number of cases and hospitalizations continued to drop.

Thirteen new locations popped up at community centers, public housing complexes and cultural centers statewide, including five that opened in New York City on Saturday. The vaccination sites, which are appointment-only, were expected to deliver shots in the arms of 3,850 New Yorkers.

These pop-up locations vanish after one week, but reappear three weeks later to administer second doses, according to the governor’s office.

The state has opened over 90 community-based, pop-up vaccination sites since Jan. 15, providing about 42,500 first doses to New Yorkers right in their neighborhoods.

The program is a collaboration between the state, health care providers, and community organizers, who identify eligible New Yorkers and help them schedule appointments.

As vaccine supply increases, the state plans to establish pop-up vaccination sites at all 33 NYCHA Senior Housing Developments, serving more than 7,600 vulnerable New Yorkers. More sites will open at other public housing complexes statewide, as well as at more than 300 churches and cultural centers.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the program ensures vaccine equity among communities of color, which are disproportionately affected by the virus and have lower vaccination rates than white communities.

“COVID impacted communities of color at a much higher rate, and it exposed the inequalities that have existed in our nation’s health care system for decades,” Cuomo said in a statement. “From day one we have made the fair and equitable distribution of the vaccine a top priority, but two issues still exist, especially in our Black and Brown communities: accessibility and skepticism. These pop-up sites allow us to work with the local leaders and trusted voices in those communities that were hit the hardest by COVID, helping to ensure access to and instill confidence in the vaccine, while also furthering our goal to vaccinate every single New Yorker.”

New York continued to see steady decreases in the number of new COVID-19 cases on Saturday.

The statewide positivity rate on a rolling seven-day average was 3.53%. The number of hospitalizations dropped below 6,000 for the first time since Dec. 14, according to state Department of Health data.

The problem remains a lack of supply. Avery Cohen, a spokesperson for Mayor de Blasio, tweeted Saturday that as of this morning, New York City had just 1,000 doses left.

The five new pop-up vaccination sites in New York City are as follows:

First Baptist Church of Crown Heights
450 Eastern Pkwy. in Brooklyn
Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Harvest Fields Community Church
2626 E. Tremont Ave. in the Bronx
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Allen Community Senior Center
166-01 Linden Blvd. in Jamaica, Queens
Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

NYCHA Fort Washington Houses
99 Fort Washington Ave. in Manhattan
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Central Family Life Center
59 Wright St. in Staten Island
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For a full list of pop-up vaccine sites statewide, click here.

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