Vaccinations for first responders begins in Hampshire County

Coronavirus Local Impact

AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – First responders from Hampshire County are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic site held in Amherst.

First responders from all eight Hampshire County towns located east of the Connecticut River received their first dose Monday and many departments will have all members vaccinated by the end of the week.

The town of Amherst has received 600 first doses of the Moderna vaccine to give to first responders in the eastern part of Hampshire County. Police, firefighters, 911 dispatchers, and EMS personnel from Amherst, Belchertown, Hadley, Hatfield, Pelham South Hadley are eligible to receive the vaccine at The Bangs Community Center in Amherst, which is run by the town’s Health Department and located at 70 Boltwood Walk in Downtown Amherst.

Online registration is required for police, fire, 911 dispatchers, and emergency medical services professionals at https://www.amherstcovid19.org/vaccine

COVID-19 vaccine locations for first responders

“We can do up to 270 first responders a day with our model. They come in here for the queue, then they register and, as a group, they go in as a group of 15, then they get vaccinated at the same time and exit at the same time,” said Amherst Public Health Director Emma Dragon.

Nearly 200 first responders were in line to receive the vaccine on the first day of availability.

“It’s going to give people a sense of security knowing they’ll get their second dose in about another 28 days that they will be a little more protected and go on with their lives and have things go back to normal shortly,” said Hatfield Fire Chief Robert Flaherty.

Vaccination Appointment Hours 

  • Monday, January 11th  9:00 am – 3:15 pm 
  • Tuesday, January 12th 5:00 pm – 7:35 pm 
  • Thursday, January 14th 9:00 am – 3:15 pm

The Bangs Community Center is only vaccinating first responders from the Hampshire County towns mentioned. They are expected to receive a shipment of second doses in about four weeks.

However, beginning this week, UMass Amherst has opened their vaccination site that is open to first responders from all cities in towns across the state.

A UMass Amherst Campus Police Officer received the first COVID-19 vaccine at the UMass Amherst located at 1 Campus Center Way. The vaccine was administered by a UMass Amherst College of Nursing Student.

Online registration will begin on Wednesday. For more information, visit www.umass.edu/coronavirus/vaccine.UMass Amherst distributes COVID-19 vaccine for first responders 

First responders can visit mass.gov/FirstResponderVaccine for COVID-19 vaccine locations and more information.

More than 100 sites across the state are planning to offer the shots to first responders, many of which will serve those working in a particular community or region.

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