Beginning on April 14, Bayonne will open another COVID-19 vaccination site at the Korpi Ice Rink behind Bayonne High School, according to Mayor James Davis. The city has been expanding its vaccination program in recent weeks as it receives more doses and more residents become eligible.
“Over the last several weeks, we’ve added the Bayonne Museum as a second site,” Davis said. “Well, that location has outgrown itself.”
According to Davis, this site is better suited to handle the large volume of residents who will be inoculated in the coming weeks.
“With the fast paced changes of eligibility, our city is adapting quickly,” Davis said, noting the new site will offer the Moderna vaccine.
Eligible residents must call the new hotline at 201-537-4818, available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Callers will speak to a live scheduler. Appointments will be made daily until all residents who want the vaccine are inoculated, Davis said.
It’s not clear if the museum site is shutting down. The city will continue to schedule residents at its primary site at Bayonne Medical Center.
The Bayonne City Council approved the contract for the new site at a special meeting on March 8. The council adopted a resolution authorizing the city to enter into an agreement with Bespoke Health, LLC of New York City.
“We are thrilled to be working with the City of Bayonne on their vaccination program,” said Derek Rapisarda, President of Bespoke Health. “We share Bayonne’s desire to vaccinate as many of its residents as possible, in a smooth and efficient manner to help put an end to this pandemic.”
The contract is for community outreach, call center operations, and COVID-19 vaccinations. The contract, not to exceed 900,000 was approved with an initial payment of $75,000. Bespoke Health has experience in Hudson County running the Jersey City vaccination program, currently overseeing multiple sites throughout the city in addition to mobile units.
The council also adopted a resolution authorizing the city to enter into an agreement with Hudson County Community College to provide supplemental nursing related services in connection with the city’s COVID-19 vaccination programs at no cost.
Davis reiterated that the city has successfully distributed well over 20,000 COVID-19 vaccines thus far. Approximately 10,000 residents have been fully vaccinated, over 15 percent of the city’s population. Schedulers have called over 12,000 residents since January.
Davis said the city has successfully vaccinated so many people because of the work of the city council and members of his administration working behind the scenes. He thanked residents for their cooperation throughout the pandemic and their willingness to be vaccinated.
Davis urged everyone to continue to wear masks, social distance, and practice good hygiene.
The vaccine is being administered at Bayonne Medical Center, the Bayonne Community Museum, the RWJBarnabas Satellite Emergency Department on Broadway, the Hudson County Vaccination Distribution Center, and to some in senior housing. Pharmacies and other companies have been offering the vaccine at private sites. Riverside Medical Group, Walmart, Stop & Shop, and Rite Aid offer the vaccine at their Bayonne locations.
Davis is urging eligible residents to take advantage of the multiple places to get vaccinated.
Those eligible include individuals age 55 and older; individuals age 16 to 54 with certain medical conditions; individuals age 16 to 54 with intellectual and developmental disabilities; childcare workers in licensed and registered settings; clergy; communications, IT, and media workers; educators and staff, including pre-K to 12 and higher education; eldercare and support workers; elections personnel; first responders; healthcare workers; hospitality workers; individuals experiencing homelessness and those living in shelters; judicial system workers; laundry services workers; librarians and library support staff; long-term care and high-risk congregate care facility residents and staff; medical supply chain employees; members of tribal communities; migrant farm workers; postal and shipping service workers; public safety workers; real estate, building, and home services workers; retail financial institution workers; sanitation workers; social service workers and support staff; transportation workers; utilities workers; and warehousing and logistics workers.
On April 19, all individuals aged 16 and older will be eligible. Residents are not eligible if they have had COVID-19 in the past 90 days.
To register at Bayonne Medical Center, call 201-858-6088 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave a message with a name, date of birth, and contact. The vaccine hotline is available weekdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
When vaccines are available, the city will reach out to registered residents to make appointments. Do not call or email the city multiple times about registering because it hampers vaccination efforts.
To register at the museum, go to bayonne.mhonsite.com. Use “Bayonne21” for the authorization code. Registration opens on Fridays for the following week. Appointments will be available on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Residents age 65 and older can register at the Walmart at East 22nd Street and Route 440 by calling 201-620-6512, or by calling the New Jersey Senior Hotline at 856-249-7007.
To register at the uptown Rite Aid at the corner of Broadway and West 54th Street, go to riteaid.com/covid-19. To register at the Stop & Shop at Route 440 and LeFante Way, go to stopandshop.com/pages/ss-pharmacy.
Residents must get their second doses at the same location as their first.
For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at email@example.com.