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For Immediate Release – October 14, 2021
Northampton Health Department’s Ongoing Regional Vaccine Efforts are Expanding to Elks Lodge in Florence
NORTHAMPTON - Beginning October 14, 2021, the City of Northampton's Health Department will now be providing COVID-19 vaccinations at the Elks Lodge in Florence. This space will have appointments available three days per week for the foreseeable future, with possibility of expanding as possible boosters could become available for individuals who have received Moderna vaccine or Janssen J&J vaccines. In addition, we plan to be able to accommodate the younger 5- to 11-year-old population once eligible. The Elks Lodge location has a large parking area with plenty of accessible parking, as well as increased capacity for indoor social distancing. The site is near the R44 PVTA bus route.
Public Health Director Merridith O’Leary states, “Vaccines are effective at helping protect against severe disease and death and this pandemic ends when enough people are protected from severe illness. Vaccination not only helps you, but it helps your community.”
Northampton currently operates four regular clinic times at three locations. Outdoor clinics are available with or without an appointment. Indoor clinics at the Municipal Building or Elks Lodge are by appointment only to maintain safe capacity limits and social distancing. Vaccine appointments and walk-in hours are open to all Massachusetts residents who are eligible to receive the vaccine.
First, second, third doses, and boosters are still available every week at several regular clinic locations as well as upcoming mobile sites in the Hilltowns. Two hours per week are set aside specifically for immunocompromised individuals requiring third doses so they may attend a clinic with other fully vaccinated individuals. Pfizer booster doses have also been available at the City Council Chambers, in Pulaski Park, at the Northampton High School, and at mobile sites in the Hilltowns. The City Council Chambers site will continue on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings. The Pulaski Park and Northampton High School clinics will continue through October, until cooler weather will begin to make it less feasible to give shots outdoors.
“We are no longer building the plane as we fly it,” says Public Health Nurse Kate Kelly, “We are in flight and tinkering with our sites and changing course a bit each time a new population is eligible. We have a skilled and dedicated team of both staff and volunteers who continue to fight this pandemic. They have shifted with us from our large mass vaccination site all the way to parking lots in rural Hilltowns. We have given shots in homes, on sidewalks, and on City Hall steps.”
To pre-register and make an appointment go to https://www.northamptonma.gov/2219/Vaccine-Clinics or if you need assistance call, 413-587-1215.