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Over 20,000 vaccines headed to Hudson County

Hudson County anticipates receiving a massive increase in its allocation of COVID-19 vaccines next week, with state and federal officials committing to providing 20,850 doses.

Next week’s shipment is nearly triple that of any previous week’s allocation and will include doses of the Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

According to the county, these vaccines will be administered at the county’s vaccination site at the USS Juneau Center, as well as through municipal partner locations in Jersey City, North Hudson, Kearny, Bayonne, and Hoboken.

The additional doses will allow the county-run site in Kearny to open for a fourth day of vaccinations on Thursday, April 8.

“Since receiving our first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in late December, Hudson County has worked tirelessly to provide residents with a robust and equitable vaccination program,” said Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise. “But as we have consistently stressed, we can only administer 100 percent of the vaccines allocated to us each week. I’m incredibly grateful for our local leaders in Hudson County and our Senator Bob Menendez who have tirelessly advocated for us to receive an increase in doses, and I thank Governor Murphy for hearing our concerns and coming through with this much-needed lifeline for Hudson County.”

Just last week U.S. Senator Robert Menendez urged the state to increase its COVID-19 vaccination rollout in Hudson County, where the vaccination rate remains dead last at just 16 doses administered per 100 residents.

“With 672,000 residents, Hudson is the fourth-most populous county in the State, yet is tenth in the total number of vaccine doses administered,” Menendez said in a March 22 letter to the governor. “Other counties have a rate as high as 33 doses administered per 100 residents. I am deeply concerned that Hudson County residents do not have equitable access to COVID-19 vaccinations.”

According to the county, of the 20,850 doses 4,680 doses will come through a partnership with FEMA and the state as part of the new federal vaccination site at New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark as Hudson County residents may not be able to travel to the new site.

“The Hudson Regional Health Commission has worked closely with the county administration and local health officers to ensure all of the necessary resources are in place for a successful vaccination program,” said Carrie Nawrocki, executive director of HRHC. “This increase in allocation is the much needed lifeline that our staff and volunteers have been preparing for since the onset of the pandemic. Along with our municipal partners, we are ready and able to efficiently administer these doses to county residents.”

As part of the effort to increase vaccine capacity, the county recently arranged the purchase of three medical-grade freezers which will be used to store more Pfizer doses at the USS Juneau Center as well as municipal vaccine sites in Jersey City and North Hudson.

Hoboken has also purchased a similar freezer that allows the municipality to administer the Pfizer vaccine.

West New York announced earlier this week that it has entered into a partnership with Holy Name Hospital to open a separate vaccine site in the city.

Currently, the USS Juneau Center is drive-in only.

To schedule an appointment for a vaccine at the county site at 110 Hackensack Ave. in Kearny go to hudsoncovidvax.org.

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