COVID New York City Update: Schools will host pop-up vaccine sites starting today

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NEW YORK CITY (WABC) – New York City is making massive efforts to vaccinate children ages 5-11.

Public schools in all five counties started setting up vaccination centers today and will continue to do so through next Monday.

Students must be accompanied by an adult and have verbal consent from a parent or legal guardian.

CLICK HERE More information about the dates and times that the city schools offer vaccinations.

Maria Arce’s 8 year old daughter got her injection this morning at PS 188 in the East Village.

“COVID is still out here,” said Arce. “I want to make sure she’s safe at school.”

Arce is one of several parents who signed a letter of consent at school allowing their children to receive the vaccine.

“We want to say to the parents: ‘We will help you with it’,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio on Monday morning. “So all city workers and contractors have an additional four hours of paid sick leave to get each child vaccinated.”

The mayor said the vaccine had been in particularly high demand at about a dozen schools in Districts 1 and 2 in Manhattan and District 15 in Brooklyn.

That’s encouraging, said NYC health commissioner Dr. David Chokshi. “It is great news that we are seeing demand for vaccinations in some of these school locations,” he said.

City officials said the vaccine will be postponed so that all schools have enough supplies.

“We are at 1,000 schools. It’s great to see the demand and then remember that this is only day 1, ”said Dr. Mitchell Katz, CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals. “We will give a vaccine to all children whose parents support him. I am very happy about the high demand.”

But despite the easier access this week, some parents still say, “Not so fast!”

“I’m a little hesitant about getting him vaccinated,” said Ayisha Rodriguez. “I’ll just wait a little longer.”

“You can still catch it and have the chance,” another Eyewitness told News.

New York City began offering the Pfizer vaccine to these younger students in city hospitals and other locations last week after the federal health authorities gave the go-ahead.

The city did the same for students ages 12-17 a few months ago, and now about 78% of that group have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Mayor-elect Eric Adams is hoping all of these shots will enable him to have the schools’ masking mandate lifted when he is sworn into office next year.

“I think part of a child’s development and socialization is that smile,” he said. “I think it is imperative that we find a safe way out. I look forward to removing the mask, but it has to be with science that we don’t turn around and close our city again.”

NYC’s school vaccination program begins the same day the Biden government sends letters to superintendents and elementary school principals across the country urging them to set up COVID vaccination clinics in their schools.

This means that the city is ahead of the curve in this initiative.

ALSO READ | Negotiations between the Fire Department Union and NYC on the COVID vaccine mandate continue

MORE CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 COVERAGE

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