City of Hartford, Saint Francis Hospital to open more COVID vaccine clinics to help serve area’s most vulnerable populations

Hartford

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — The City of Hartford and Saint Francis Hospital are planning to open several new vaccine clinics.

The initiative will bring free COVID-19 vaccinations into local neighborhoods in the Capital City.

Hospital officials said it’s all in an effort to provide greater access to the vaccine for the area’s most vulnerable populations.

RELATED: State partnering with Health Equity Solutions to inform underserved residents, communities of color about facts and myths surrounding COVID-19 vaccine

The locations will be convenient; however, people will still need an appointment, and right now it is still just folks 65 and older who are eligible to get the vaccine.

The first clinic, which is located at Parker Memorial Community Center, is already open.

Mayor Luke Bronin and hospital staff will hold a news conference to talk about the initiative later this morning. You can stream it live on WTNH.com or the News 8 app.

The announcement comes as more students in Hartford are set to head back to the classroom.

Many teachers said they should not have to go back to in-person teaching until they get the vaccine.

However, school officials said the positivity rate is low and they consulted with health professionals..

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the state guidance does not require that all staff be vaccinated prior to returning to full-time in-person learning. and this is about 7,500 of our students out of our 17,500 students that are coming back, so we still have almost half of our students that are still fully remote,” explained Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez with Hartford Public Schools.

In-person learning is voluntary for the students. As for vaccines, there are a lot more people wanting vaccines than there are doses available right now. But occasionally, a clinic or pharmacy has some leftover shots at the end of the day. Instead of throwing them away, there is now a group called Connecticut Vaccine Hunters.

The group runs a website to match up folks who want their shot but are not eligible yet, with places that might have excess vaccines.

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