Officials: Give mobile vaccination vehicle a shot

Exterior of Mohawk Ambulance Service Station No. 1 at 793 State Street in Schenectady Sunday 

Exterior of Mohawk Ambulance Service Station No. 1 at 793 State Street in Schenectady Sunday 

ALBANY — Mohawk Ambulance Service announced Sunday a mobile vaccination vehicle will soon bring COVID-19 vaccines to the doorsteps of Albany County residents.

With the goal vaccinating approximately 250,000 people via the mobile unit, MAS has purchased medical grade freezers and additional temporary storage and transportation equipment that will allow for the storing of more than 110,000 Pfizer doses and 220,000 Moderna doses.

In facilitating the large-scale, mobile vaccination, MAS has partnered with county Executive Daniel P. McCoy and Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan.

“Just as we listened to the community that asked us to bring COVID testing directly to them with our mobile testing sites, they’re now asking us to bring the vaccine to them,” McCoy said.

Sheehan said the pandemic has disproportionately impacted the residents who need the vaccine the most. The mobile vaccination vehicle will help make sure the most vulnerable residents can get vaccinated, she said.

“Many seniors, those living in our minority neighborhoods and those with underlying health conditions either can’t drive or don’t have access to reliable transportation,” McCoy noted.

As of Sunday, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Albany County climbed to 14,016 — an increase of 279 new positive cases since Saturday, 14 being healthcare workers or residents of congregate settings. There are now 2,055 active cases in Albany County, with the number of individuals under mandatory quarantine increasing from 3,086 to 3,204.

From Saturday to Sunday, there were 13 new hospitalizations overnight, with 147 county residents being currently hospitalized with the virus, including 11 ICU patients, down from 12 on Saturday. Since Saturday, there has been one COVID-19 related death — a man in his 20s.

The COVID-19 death toll for the county now stands at 250.

There has also been an increase of 286 recoveries since Saturday, with 11,961 of the 42,751 that completed quarantine having recovered after receiving a positive test result.

“The ongoing COVID-19 vaccination process is one of the most challenging public health tasks that our nation has faced in generations,” commented MAS Director of Operations Jovan Cruz.

Three pop up testing sites, established in collaboration with the Whitney M. Young Jr., Health Center, have been established for Monday through Friday. Testing is for those experiencing symptoms, essential workers and those returning to work. Tests will be issued by appointment only, following a phone screening.

To be screened, call 518-465-4771.

Testing will take place Monday, and Friday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Times Union Center, 51 South Pearl St., Albany; and Wednesday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Whitney Young Administrative Building, 1601 Broadway, Watervliet.

Once the mobile vaccination unit is up and running, which will be in the coming weeks, residents can contact Albany County to make an appointment, a news release said. Residents should not contact MAS directly.

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