COVID-19 cases continue to rise daily on Long Island and people are in need of the COVID vaccines. Long Island has decided to open a couple vaccination sites across Nassau and Suffolk County. One of the newest COVID vaccination sites is at the Union Baptist Church in Hempstead where there is an effort to get the heavily populated minority community vaccinated.
Another site that has opened is the Yes we Can Community Center in Westbury where essential workers and the elderly will now be able to call and set up appointments to get their COVID-19 vaccinations. These are just the first two of many potential planned openings as Long Island tries to vaccinate as many people as possible.
This is potentially a big step in the right direction as many hard hit communities of colors are in a rush, and anxiously waiting to get vaccinated.
“It was unavailable everywhere,” said Patricia Mack, a Westbury resident to News 12. “I kept trying and trying, now I’m happy to have this opportunity [of getting vaccinated].”
“We have stood over many caskets over the past 11 months of people who lost their lives,” said Bishop Lionel Harvey, of First Baptist Church of Westbury, and he’s happy that this church is now a vaccination site for people of color on Long Island.
“This is a way of making sure this has been done fairly, equitably, and smartly for those who need it,” said Dr. Lawrence Eisenstein, the Nassau County Health Commissioner, to News 12.
Another pop vaccination site is the Memorial Presbyterian Church in Roosevelt. The two site opened today. Many expected to have appointments fill up fast as the clock to get vaccinated continues to tick.
With a depleting supply of vaccination doses left, in a press release, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, “It will take about seven and half months to vaccinate people who are eligible.” Since were running low on the vaccine, there are thousands of cancelled scheduled appointments for those who are eligible.
One Long Island resident, who wanted to remain anonymous, said she is planning to drive six hours to Plattsburgh in upstate New York to get vaccinated, since there was an early available appointment date.
“I couldn’t get anything here,” she said. “I tried at Jones Beach, they are booked until May.”
Over 149,000 and counting vaccination doses have been given to Long Island. About 144,000 people have received it so far.
“The undeniable fact is that COVID has killed the black and latino communities at a higher rate then the white community,” said Gov. Cuomo. “That’s why New York has made ensuring fairness and equity in the vaccine distribution such a priority.”