Nassau County Executive Laura Curran announced the opening of a new COVID-19 vaccine distribution center, in partnership between the County, Northwell Health and New York State at the “Yes We Can” Community Center in Westbury. The vaccines will be administered by Nassau County Department of Health staff, Members of Nassau County’s Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) with assistance from Northwell Health, which has been designated by New York State as Long Island’s vaccination HUB. The center began vaccinations today, January 9 for residents who meet the criteria set forth by New York State.
“Nassau County is leading the way with distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine as we open another vaccine POD.” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. “Along with our hospital partners we have already vaccinated tens of thousands of residents–we are not wasting any time or any doses. I am committed to providing equitable access to the vaccine, especially in our hardest hit communities such as the Westbury/New Cassel area. The County will continue to build the infrastructure to dole out this vaccine as quickly and effectively as possible as supply comes in. Thank you to all the volunteers who are the gears keeping our vaccine machine running at full speed. I encourage all residents who are eligible to roll up their sleeve and get the vaccine. We can do it, Nassau!”
The site at the “Yes We Can” Community Center in Westbury will be operating 7 days a week to vaccinate eligible residents with an appointment. The announcement comes less than a week after the County vaccine center opened at Nassau Community College and inoculated over one thousand people.
New York State continues to expand the criteria for who can receive the COVID-19 vaccine. For regular updates on who is currently eligible for the vaccine under New York State’s guidance and to make an appointment, residents can visit the County’s vaccine website at www.nassaucountyny.gov/vaccine. Only those who meet the criteria can make an appointment at this time. The vaccine will be provided for free regardless of insurance or immigration status.
As of Friday, January 8, the following residents meet the criteria to the vaccine as per the New York State prioritization guidance:
- High-risk hospital staff, affiliates, volunteers and contract staff including State-operated Office of
- Mental Health (OMH) psychiatric centers
- Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Personnel
- Medical Examiners and Coroners
- Funeral workers who have direct contact with infectious material and bodily fluids.
- Health care, other high-risk direct care essential staff and agency staff working in Long Term Care
- Facilities and long-term, congregate settings overseen by Office of People with Developmental
- Disabilities (OPWDD) the Office of Mental Health (OMH) and the Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS).
- Residents living in Long Term Care Facilities and in long-term congregate settings overseen by OPWDD, OMH and OASAS
- FQHC staff
- Urgent Care providers
- Any staff administering COVID-19 vaccinations
- All public facing health care workers including those who provide direct in-person patient care or other staff in a position where they have direct contact with patients.
- Hospice workers and home health aides
- Law Enforcement with ALS (advanced lifesaving) certification
“A successful, equitable rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine is the key to ensuring New Yorkers are protected from the coronavirus, and our community is able to reopen and recover from the pandemic era. It’s critical that every community have access to this life-saving resource, and I’m grateful to County Executive Curran and Governor Cuomo for working together to open a vaccination distribution center at the Yes We Can Center in Westbury. I encourage everyone in our community to roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated as soon as they are able,” said Senator Anna Kaplan.
“Residents of communities like New Cassel and Westbury have played an indispensable role in Nassau County’s pandemic response through their labor as frontline workers, medical professionals and first responders. By establishing this site at the Yes We Can Center, Nassau County and the Town of North Hempstead are recognizing the valiant efforts of these essential workers,” said Nassau County Legislator Siela A. Bynoe. “Most importantly, we are increasing access to the COVID-19 vaccine by embedding this life-saving service in a residential community that has been greatly impacted by the pandemic.”
“The early emergence of COVID-19 vaccines has brought on much needed optimism for the future,” said North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth. “While availability has been limited, more residents will become eligible to receive the vaccine as distribution centers continue to open and New York’s supply increases. With that said, we are proud to partner with County Executive Curran to make vaccinations available at our facility in Westbury.”
“As a Town we continue to collectively monitor and address the uphill battle of the current pandemic caused by Covid -19 and now the virus’ variant strain of B117. Having access to the newly available Moderna vaccine at a Point of Distribution location set up here at our easily accessible “Yes We Can” Community Center now provides a strong opportunity to keep this deadly virus at bay. As a heavily impacted area, this POD will greatly benefit the community and serve as a strong deterrent against the virus here in New Cassel/Westbury and the surrounding areas,” said North Hempstead Councilwoman Viviana Russell.