NEW YORK - Three new vaccine hubs open Sunday, a step in the right direction as COVID-19 cases are on the rise. The new hubs will have the capability to vaccinate thousands of people each day.
The new hubs are located at the South Bronx Educational Campus, the Bushwick Educational Campus in Brooklyn and the Hillcrest High School in Jamaica Queens.
Each hub hopes to vaccinate between 5,000 and 7,000 people a day, operating from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day of the week.
"The whole process of turning a vaccine into a vaccination takes about 30 minutes. Since you need two doses of the vaccine, that means that each of us is only one hour away from doing what we need to do to beat back COVID,” said NYC Health Department Commissioner, Dr. Dave Chokshi.
They were placed in some of the areas that have suffered the most during the pandemic, including communities of color that have been impacted disproportionately.
"What COVID has actually demonstrated is the historic, systemic, racial inequities that this county has been subjected to. COVID has underscored the fact that for the last decade and a half we are still last in terms of healthcare metrics,” New York State Senator Luis Sepúlveda said.
These new hubs come at a crucial time in the state’s fight against the coronavirus. Three new cases of the highly transmissible COVID-19 variant were detected Saturday. Two in Saratoga Springs, where the state’s first case was discovered. Another was found in Nassau County, Long Island.
“It’s most important to get the healthcare workers vaccinated especially with the UK strain out there. The UK strain is incredibly virulent and dangerous.” said Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Those who are currently eligible for the vaccine include high risk healthcare workers and staff and residents in long term care facilities.
Starting Monday, people over 75, education workers, the police and firefighters, public transit and safety workers will also be eligible. All have to make appointments in advance.
In addition to the three hubs opening Sunday, 12 more are being launched in the city next week.
Those eligible to receive the vaccine can head to the city's health department website.