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High-risk individuals can now get vaccinated

Phase 1B is in full swing

Police Chief Robert Geisler receives the first dose of the Moderna vaccine on Jan. 8.

As of Jan. 14, those who can receive the COVID-19 vaccine expanded from hospital personnel, long-term care facility residents and staff, and first responders to include individuals at high risk.

On Jan. 8, law enforcement and firefighters began receiving the vaccine at Bayonne Medical Center as part of Phase 1B. Among those to get their first doses of the vaccine were Police Chief Robert Geisler and Fire Chief Keith Weaver.

“Today the Bayonne Medical Center began inoculating Bayonne Police Department and Bayonne Fire Department personnel,” Geisler said on Jan. 8. “Thank you to all the frontline hero health professionals at BMC. Thank you to the staff administering our vaccines, and thank you to Dr. Singh and everyone at BMC for their continued support and partnership with the Bayonne Police Department.”

Bayonne Medical Center began administering the Moderna vaccine to staff on Dec. 22 as part of Phase 1A. The Bayonne Housing Authority also began administering the vaccine to residents of its senior buildings. The BHA partnered with a pharmacy and has been vaccinating seniors for the past two weeks. 

Distribution continues

The vaccination distribution schedule in New Jersey is currently in transition from Phase 1A to Phase 1B. According to NJ Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli, the phases of vaccine distribution will overlap, but those included in Phase 1A are still eligible to receive the vaccine.

Phase 1A includes hospital personnel and long-term care facility residents and staff. Phase 1B includes first responders, individuals at high risk, and other frontline essential workers. Phase 1C incudes other essential workers. The general population will receive the vaccine in Phase 2.

Currently, all those included in Phase 1A and Phase 1B can receive the vaccine. The only exception is other frontline essential workers included in Phase 1B.

Registering seniors

Those at high risk include individuals 65 and older, and individuals ages 16 to 64 with medical conditions.

Prior to the announcement by the state that vaccinations were moving into the next phase, Mayor James Davis had been urging residents over the age of 65 who want to be vaccinated to contact the city.

Seniors can email the city at bayvax@baynj.org or call 201-858-6088. Leave a message with your name, date of birth, and a contact number. The city will contact registered seniors when they can get vaccinated.

While Bayonne Medical Center remains the only vaccine point of distribution (POD) in the city, there are plans to open a distribution site in each ward when the general population will receive the vaccine as part of Phase 2.

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.

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