BOSTON (CBS) – Officials in Massachusetts are shifting the focus of their vaccine distribution away from hospitals, and more toward mass vaccination sites.
“Why should we have to travel all the way to the Fenway? No transportation,” said Annie Jones, who had hoped to get a shot at the clinic Mass General Brigham runs in Chelsea. It’s a city that has been called the epicenter of the pandemic in the state. “Who’s going to pay for our transportation?”READ MORE: 34-Year-Old Man Dies After Hit-And-Run In Bridgewater
Mass General Brigham says the state has informed its hospitals and all others they won’t be getting any more vaccine. That affects the clinics Mass General runs in Chelsea, Revere, Lynn, and other locations. “Those clinics, like the rest of our clinics in the state, will be closing down,” said Dr. Thomas Sequist, the Chief Patient Experience and Equity Officer at Mass General Brigham.
The state’s COVID-19 Command Center put out a statement. “The Commonwealth will distribute more vaccines to…mass vaccination sites, retail pharmacy sites, and community health centers until more vaccines are made available by the federal government.”READ MORE: Franklin Man Allegedly Driving 142 MPH Arrested In New Hampshire
Governor Charlie Baker has said mass vaccination sites like those at Fenway Park and Gillette Stadium have the best record of getting more shots into more people. But in Chelsea, many say that’s not an option. “ I start working at 4:30 every morning…so that means I have to get a day off to go over there to get a shot, or the difference of going right over here,” said grocery worker Eduardo Barea, pointing to the MGH Chelsea building.
“We of course have some measure of disappointment in not being able to deliver that service to our patients who we have longstanding relationships with and trusted relationships with,” said Dr. Sequist.MORE NEWS: 800 Nurses At St. Vincent Hospital In Worcester Preparing To Strike
Healthcare workers and patients who have appointments for first or second doses can keep them, but the Mass General Brigham clinics will phase out in two weeks.