Should polling places offer COVID-19 vaccine?

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BOSTON (WWLP) – A letter was written to Governor Baker suggesting COVID-19 vaccine sites be set up near polling places in Massachusetts.

Secretary of State William Galvin wrote in a letter to Governor Baker suggesting that a pilot program for COVID-19 vaccinations be set up near polling places since there are a number of communities holding elections in March.

“Much like an election, massive vaccine distribution to the public requires organizational efforts, which involve an army of trained temporary workers and enough space to accommodate large crowds with detailed record-keeping. With planning, this opportunity presents geographically organized populations which are specifically identified and where appropriate age can be verified. Because of social distancing protocols which are already in effect, larger premises are being used already for voting,” the letter states.

Galvin hopes to set up vaccination centers next to polling places, so that those who are eligible for vaccinations may receive their first shot in a nearby and convenient location.

“It just seems to be an opportunity to test the idea of how we’re gonna get this done. Other than that, how are we gonna vaccinate millions of people? How are we gonna get this done as quickly as possible so we can resume our lives,” said Galvin.

Annual elections held throughout Massachusetts in the spring overlaps with the state’s vaccine rollout plan for residents to receive the vaccine.

The Governor has not signed off on the program yet, the secretary’s letters still sits on his desk.

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