Gov. Phil Murphy and White House COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force Chair Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith today announced the second phase of a community-based vaccination partnership between the Murphy Administration and Biden Administration to provide equitable access of the COVID-19 vaccine to underserved communities throughout New Jersey.
The second phase of the program will bring an additional five community-based vaccination sites to the state in Camden, Jersey City, Orange, Newark, and Pleasantville. Murphy announced the initial phase of the program earlier this month, which includes sites in Somerset, Trenton, Elizabeth, Paterson, and Vineland.
The community-based vaccination sites are supported through a partnership by the New Jersey Department of Health, New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and U.S. Department of Defense, in addition to local faith leaders, nonprofit organizations, local officials, and health departments. These cities have been strategically selected as they have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and are some of the most diverse and socio-economically challenged communities in the state. The ten community-based vaccination sites will vaccinate over 34,000 residents.
“As we continue our vaccination efforts across the State, ensuring equitable access to appointments and vaccinations remains our highest priority,” said Governor Murphy. “Our successful collaboration with our faith and local leaders, as well as the federal government, allows us to engage with our communities and deliver vaccination resources directly into the areas hardest hit by COVID-19.”
“It is clear that the commitment to equity is strong in New Jersey,” said Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, Chair of the White House COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force. “New Jersey clearly understands how you reach people, the people who have been the hardest hit, not just through top-down messaging campaigns but through real engagement. Listening to communities is how we anchor our work. I am grateful to have New Jersey in this fight.”
In order to ensure equitable access in these high-need cities, these sites will operate as closed points of distribution for members of the immediate community only. Vaccination appointments will be required and will be handled directly through partnering houses of worship, community organizations, and local community leaders. Each site will coordinate with a health partner and vaccine will be dispensed from the State’s allocation.
A vaccination support team from the Department of Defense will provide the clinical staffing at the sites and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide non-medical support. Each site will be able to vaccinate approximately 1,800 people per week and vaccinations at each location will take place over a two-week period, followed by a return to administer second doses.
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