FOXBORO, MASS. (WHDH) - Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday announced that all groups in the first phase of Massachusetts’ vaccination plan can now register to get the COVID-19 shot as efforts to get people inoculated ramp up at Gillette Stadium, the Commonwealth’s first mass vaccination site.
“The health care system is making progress on vaccinating frontline health care workers, long-term care residents, and long-term care staff, in addition to first responders,” Baker said during a news conference at the home of the Patriots and Revolution. “Today we’re moving ahead with the process of including all groups in Phase 1 of the state’s vaccination plan.”
Health care workers including dentists, medical and nursing students, physical therapists, hospital interpreters, hospice and palliative care professionals, behavioral health clinicians, blood donation workers, podiatrists, substance use disorder treatment program staff, asthma and allergy specialists, dialysis center workers and patients, school nurses, clergy members who work with patients, chiropractors, acupuncturists, and more are eligible to receive vaccines starting on Thursday, according to Baker.
The state has launched a website for people to check the status of their eligibility based on their age, occupation, and preexisting medical conditions. Those who are eligible can make an appointment to get vaccinated.
The state currently has more than 150 vaccination sites up and running. A map of available sites can be viewed here.
Additional sites are expected to come online next week, according to Baker. A second mass vaccination site is slated to open at Fenway Park on Feb. 1.
“The Commonwealth will keep opening more sites in all regions of the state to make sure that everybody has access to a site that’s convenient to them,” Baker explained. “We plan to have several more large-scale mass vaccination sites like this open soon.”
The site at Gillette began administering vaccines on Monday, becoming the first professional sports venue in the Northeast to begin doing so. Nearly 2,000 doses have been administered since then, Baker noted.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who spoke alongside Baker, said his organization is “very proud” to assist the state in its fight against the pandemic.
“While the Patriots and Revolution have proven to be assets to the community, so is this building in which they play in,” Kraft said. “We have celebrated some great moments over the past 19 years but maybe none as important as what we’re doing here today.”
Kraft said staff at Gillette have already gone from administering 300 vaccinations a day to 1,500 vaccinations a day.
“We expect to continue to expand the scope of the vaccinations in the days and weeks ahead,” Kraft added. “We look forward to working with the state as they expand the next two phases to extend vaccination invitations to residents throughout the whole Commonwealth.”
Kraft also said that he hopes the vaccine will serve as a path to getting fans back into the stadium for live football and soccer next season.
“As much as we love hosting these vaccinations, what we’re looking for the most is to return to normal and to host our Patriot and Revolution fans in-person this coming season,” Kraft said.
Since the beginning of the vaccine rollout, 825,650 shots have been shipped to health care providers across the state and 377,459 doses have been administered, according to Baker.
An additional 10,000 doses were sent to 16 CVS and Walgreens locations this week, Baker said. Eligible recipients can make an appointment to get vaccinated.
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