Northampton to continue to offer vaccination site

  • Student pharmacist Wilbur Quimba dilutes vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at University Medical Center of Southern Nevada on Dec. 16, 2020, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images/TNS) Ethan Miller

Staff Writer
Published: 1/24/2021 8:14:05 PM

NORTHAMPTON — The city will continue to offer its vaccination site for future phases of the state’s COVID-19 vaccination rollout.

“That’s the plan of our health department,” Mayor David Narkewicz said.

The city has provided 690 first doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at its vaccination site. Moderna is a two-dose vaccine.

“This vaccination is one of the most important steps we can take to protect us from the devastations of COVID-19, and we have made sure that every dose provided to us has been put to good use,” Merridith O’Leary, the city’s public health director, said in a statement.

On Thursday, Gov. Charlie Baker opened up vaccine eligibility to all people eligible in Phase 1 of the state’s vaccine rollout.

“This just makes it easier on our end,” O’Leary said in an interview.

She also said that while there is no firm date for Phase 2, she thinks it will be around mid-February at the latest.

Individuals who are eligible to receive the vaccine in Phase 1 of the rollout will be able to register via a link on the city website at www.northamptonma.gov/vaccineclinics. Those who need assistance with online registration can call the health department at 413-587-1219.

The vaccine is free to individuals and is being provided to states by the federal government. If individuals have insurance, they will be asked to provide it as part of the registration for the Northampton site. However, no person will be turned away due to lack of insurance, and there are no associated out-of-pocket costs at the Northampton site.

“Our goal is to try to get people vaccinated,” said Narkewicz.

However, O’Leary said the vaccine supply the city has access to is currently very limited.

“We’re hopeful that it ramps up,” said O’Leary.

She also said that the vaccine is safe, and it’s important to get it to protect oneself and others. Additionally, she said that masking, social distancing and testing for COVID-19 are still important.

Bera Dunau can be reached at bdunau@gazettenet.com.




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