Massachusetts increasing appointments at mass vaccination sites

Coronavirus Local Impact

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Governor Charlie Baker is pushing eligible residents to get vaccinated, after the state Friday added 55,000 appointments for the three mass vaccination sites.

As of Friday, Gov. Baker said there were still 20,000 appointments available at the Gillette Stadium, Fenway Park, and Eastfield mall sites combined. The Eastfield Mall in Springfield continues to be busy, despite only the 75 and older age group being allowed the vaccine in Phase 2.

The snow Sunday didn’t stop people from getting over to the Eastfield Mall for appointments. People were thrilled to get the shot, but they had some concerns about what it took to get here.

“We had to wait around the corner of the building in a long line of people, we didn’t know exactly where to go in line because people were here at different times,” said Mary Ann Poggi of Chicopee. “And we couldn’t socially distance in line so we stepped out into the road.”

“It was uncomfortable for me to walk all this distance, but other than that the shot was fine and once we got in there it was fine,” said Mary Ann, who got her first dose on Sunday.

Up until now, people have had to make online appointments, even if they didn’t have access to the state’s website.

“It was easy making the appointment, but my aunt here could not do that,” Mary Ann continued. “She doesn’t use a cell phone, she has no internet, so that’s why I’m with her. Everything is on my phone.”

The state came up with a solution for this issue. Starting Monday morning, residents can call 2-1-1 and a representative will make the appointment for a senior 75 or older who can’t use the website. Everyone who got their first dose at the Eastfield Mall, will need to make another appointment for their second.

More than 680,00 Massachusetts residents have received at least the first dose of the vaccine so far. Gov. Baker also said over 1-million doses have been shipped to providers across the state.

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